Fulton v Bear Scotland
Issues around holiday pay seem to have been rumbling on for a lifetime.
The latest is that the EAT has now confirmed one important principle in respect of claims: a gap of three months or more is enough to break the series of deductions.
So, where an employee has been underpaid, or has not been paid any of their holiday pay, they are entitled to bring a claim against their employer – as they would in respect of other wage deductions. But where there has been a gap of at least three months between these underpayments or non-payments, that effectively cuts off their claim; the gap prevents them from claiming further back in time.
It’s an important affirmation of the EAT’s earlier decision in the dispute between these parties. The three-month cut-off was established at a previous hearing, but it was then argued that that point wasn’t binding. This latest decision simply firms up on the rule that employees will only be able to claim back as far as the ‘series of deductions’ continued without a break of more than three months. It’s a significant detail in favour of employers because it reduces the scope for backdated claims.