New Judgment: University and College Union v The University of Stirling (Scotland)  UKSC 26
29 Wednesday Apr 2015
On appeal from:  CSIH 5
The Supreme Court unanimously allowed the appellant Union’s appeal against the respondent’s decision to not consider those employed under Limited Term Contracts in the consultation process of up to 140 staff redundancies. The Union considered that the employees should have been considered, following the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992, s 188(1), as they had been dismissed as redundant.
The EAT and the Inner House ruled that all four test case employees had been dismissed, but that none of them had been dismissed as redundant.
The Court reasoned that the issue depended upon two issues. Firstly it established that it was common ground that the expiry and non-renewal of a Limited Term Contract amounted to a dismissal. Secondly, it had to consider whether such a dismissal was “for a reason not related to the individual concerned” which was the definition of a dismissal as redundant under s 195(1) of the 1992 Act. It stated that the fact that the employee had entered into a Limited Term Contract could not mean that the dismissal was for a reason related to the individual. It reasoned that if employees’ employment contracts were “reasons related to the individual concerned” then such business rearrangements would not be recovered. The coming to an end of a Limited Terms Contract was a reason related to the employer’s business, not the individual concerned.