Tribunal finds employee disabled when evidence indicates otherwise

17 November 2014

The case of Department for Work and Pensions v Conyers shows how unpredictable disability discrimination cases can be, and at the same time provides some useful guidance for employers in relation to these cases.

We are grateful to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) for their report on this case, which rested on whether the employee in question was disabled.

The report shows that the tribunal found that the claimant in this case was disabled when:

· the joint expert report said she was not

· the witness statement said the employee thought she was not

· the evidence from the employee on the day indicated she was not disabled.

However the Employment Appeals Tribunal reversed that decision, relying on those notes of the tribunal hearing which could be located. The case therefore illustrates the value of taking a comprehensive note of tribunal hearings where possible.