Leading South East law firm Thomson Snell & Passmore held its sixth successful mock Employment Tribunal (ET) in Ashford last week. The event drew a record attendance of nearly 70 people.
The purpose of Thomson Snell & Passmore’s mock ET is to provide employers and other interested parties with an insight into a typical ET. Thomson Snell & Passmore’s mock ETs are performed by practicing barristers and a judge with many years courtroom experience.
For HR and people management professionals, this was an invaluable opportunity for them to see the way barristers presented their case and the way witness evidence was tested, as well as to ask the actors questions about employment law and the ET process.
Some of the feedback received for the event includes:
- “Great, informative session. Would recommend”
- “I found this event so interesting and very beneficial to my learning”
- “Thank you again for a fantastic event yesterday”
- “I attend a number of events and I find them all to be informative and helpful towards my development. They are always an enjoyable experience.”
The mock ET was based on an actual case in which an employee was dismissed for making changes to staff payroll records. The employee had claimed she was unfairly dismissed as a result of the employer coming to an unreasonable conclusion in her guilt flowing from an inadequate investigation.
The employer conversely argued that it had undertaken a reasonable investigation, and had reasonably concluded from the evidence that the employee had deliberately changed the payroll records, giving grounds for her dismissal.
The judge in the mock ET dismissed the employee’s claim and found for the employer, but the case could have gone the other way. This served to underline the unpredictable nature of ET decisions, and the importance of putting together a cogent argument and credible witnesses to winning at an ET.
Sonia Lassnig, Chair of the Kent Branch of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, sat as a lay member of the ET. Commenting on her experience, she said the following:
“This was my second mock ET with Thomson Snell & Passmore as lay panel member. As before it was a real privilege to be able to play such an integral part to the day. I found it fascinating to watch the case unfold and had to concentrate hard in making sure I understood all the important elements. This is not something I get to do everyday, there was lots of learning on my part. Thank you for inviting me to be on the panel and my thanks to those who organised and planned the day.”
If you are interested in attending a future mock ET please contact Nick Hobden, Head of Employment at Thomson Snell & Passmore, by email on firstname.lastname@example.org, who will be happy to add you to the invite list for the next event.