Raffray v States of Guernsey (Guernsey)

What was it about?

Unfair dismissal


What was the outcome?

The claim for unfair dismissal was successful, and the Claimant was awarded £66,094.50.

The Tribunal determined that employer pension contributions did not fall within the meaning of ‘pay’ as set out in Section 34 of The Employment Protection (Guernsey) Law 1998 as amended. Therefore, they could not include the payments in the calculation of the award.

The fact that the States of Guernsey chose to defend an unfair dismissal case where no process had been followed as part of the termination is a surprise. It seems odd that public monies would be used to defend a claim that had little prospect of success from the publicly available facts due to procedural failings.


What were the facts?

The Claimant was employed as a Crown Advocate. He was given notice to terminate his employment, but the Respondent did not undertake any fair process concerning the termination decision.

Following a “lengthy period of case management”, the Respondent withdrew its defence of the claim.

As there was no defence, the Tribunal concluded that the claim would be determined on the claim form submitted by the Claimant.

The primary argument related to the employer pension contributions and if they should be included in any such award. The Tribunal considered this but determined that those contributions did not fall within the recognised definition of pay used to calculate the unfair dismissal award.

As such, whilst the Claimant did receive a significant award, this was based on basic salary and did not include the contributions.

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