The principle that UK laws which are derived from EU law must be construed as permitting claims in England, where English law is the proper law of the contract, only applies where the employee works in the EU.

The claimant, who worked in Dubai, claimed holiday pay under the Working Time Regulations, which expressly only extend to Great Britain. He sought to rely on the 2008 ruling in Bleuse v MBT Transport that a German claimant who had worked in Germany under a contract governed by English law could claim statutory holiday pay in England, on the basis that the EU law on holiday pay is directly effective and UK law must be construed to provide an effective remedy for breach of such rights if possible. This ruling left open the question of whether an English governing law was enough, or whether the claimant had to be an EU national or be working in the EU. The EAT has answered the latter, ruling that the Directive and Bleuse do not apply to employees working outside the EU (although the point received little discussion).

The EAT also confirmed that the test for the territorial scope of a claim under section 10 of the Employment Relations Act 1999 (the right to be accompanied to a disciplinary hearing) is the same as that for unfair dismissal, namely that the claimant’s connections with Great Britain and British law must be sufficiently strong such that Parliament is presumed to have intended protection to apply and, if the claimant lives and works wholly abroad, stronger than the connection to another country. (Dhunna v Creditsights)