Seán McHugh

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Barrister

Seán is a practitioner specialising in all aspects of Employment Law. Seán has over 10-years’ experience advising and representing parties before the Employment Tribunal and Civil Courts. Seán has built up particular expertise in – and is regularly instructed on – high value, complex and sensitive reputational disputes involving leading corporates, government bodies, and senior executives’, professional bodies such as the NHS, and Charities. He has developed a national practice with a client base that encompasses a diverse range of sectors and industries. Seán has been involved in many complex multi-day public interest/discrimination cases acting for and advising both Claimants and Respondents nationally.

Seán also has experience of obtaining successful outcomes at Judicial Mediation.

Seán is qualified to work on a direct access basis.

Recent cases include:

– representing a national care home against claims of unfair dismissal and race discrimination;

– representing a university against claims of race and sex discrimination, resulting in a cost hearing against the claimant and her representatives;

– representing a claimant who brought claims of unfair dismissal and age discrimination against a national bakery company;

– representing a national hotel chain against claims of unfair dismissal and age discrimination;

– representing a higher education college against claims of direct race and sex discrimination;

– representing a well-known charity against a former accountant employee’s claims of whistleblowing and constructive unfair dismissal whose claims had been remitted by the EAT;

– representing a claimant against his former housing association who brought claims of direct race discrimination, harassment and victimisation: a settlement offer was finally agreed;

– representing a claimant who brought claims of whistle-blowing, direct and indirect disability discrimination and a reasonable adjustment claim against the Ministry of Justice;

– representing a national disability charity against a claim of unfair dismissal.

– representing a national motor parts supplier against claims of direct discrimination on grounds of pregnancy or maternity, harassment on grounds of sex, unfair dismissal and automatically unfair dismissal (s. 99 ERA and Regulation 20, Maternity & Parental Leave Regulations, 1999) (“MPL Regs”);

– representing a national fast food company against claims of whistleblowing and unfair dismissal.

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Latest News

  • Employment - 18, May
    geese sleep

    Is it possible to get paid whilst being asleep on the job?

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    Posted by Seán McHugh

    Yes. Case law in this area highlights the complexity of the Regulations when considering a worker who is required to ‘sleep on the job’.  Further, it appears that each case will be decided on its own facts, including the wording of the contract and the context within which it is made.  If employers fail to … Continue reading Is it possible to get paid whilst being asleep on the job?

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  • Employment - 18, May
    leaves change notice

    When is an employee deemed to have had effective Notice?

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    Posted by Seán McHugh

    In the recent case of Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust –and- Haywood [2017] EWCA Civ 153, the Court of Appeal considered this vexed question. The Trust sent a letter to Ms. Haywood purporting to terminate her employment with 12 weeks’ notice on 20 April, 2011.  Ms. Haywood was out of the country on holiday at … Continue reading When is an employee deemed to have had effective Notice?

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  • Employment - 18, May
    sunflower polkey

    When “to Polkey or not to Polkey”, that is a good question

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    Posted by Seán McHugh

      This is a question that is considered in almost all unfair dismissal claims: whether or not there has been procedural unfairness such that a tribunal may either reduce a claimant’s award for not having followed a fair procedure, or increase a claimant’s award because the respondent didn’t follow a fair procedure. Any award made … Continue reading When “to Polkey or not to Polkey”, that is a good question

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