On appeal from: [2017] EWCA Civ 1008

The claimant appealed against a decision that the calculation of an enhancement under the ill-health early retirement provisions of his pension was not unfavourable treatment that constituted discrimination arising from disability.

The Court unanimously dismissed the appeal. Passages in the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s Code of Practice (2011) provided helpful guidance as to the relatively low threshold of disadvantage (“unfavourable treatment”) sufficient to trigger the requirement to justify the treatment as a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim, under the Equality Act 2010, s 15(1). However, in this case the only basis on which the claimant was entitled to any pension award at this time was by reason of his disabilities. Had he been able to work full-time, the consequence would have been, not an enhanced entitlement, but no immediate right to a pension at all. In those circumstances the award was not in any sense “unfavourable”, nor (applying the approach of the Code) could it reasonably have been so regarded.

For judgment, please download: [2018] UKSC 65
For Court’s Press Summary, please download: Court’s Press Summary
For a non-PDF version of the judgment, please visit: BAILII

To watch the hearing, please visit: Supreme Court Website (16 Oct 2018 morning session) (16 Oct 2018 afternoon session)