In Boxer v. Excel Group Services Ltd ET/3200365/2016,
Mr Boxer brought a successful claim against Excel Group Services
Ltd (Excel) for one week's holiday pay. Mr Boxer had been a
cycle courier for Excel since September 2013. His contract
described him as a "subcontractor" and he was registered
as self-employed with HMRC. Excel did not pay Mr Boxer when he took
a week's holiday and so he decided to claim for his holiday
The Employment Tribunal had to decide whether Mr Boxer was a
"worker" under section 230(3)(b) of the Employment Rights
Act 1996 and regulation 2(1) of the Working Time Regulations 1998
(SI 1998/1833) in order to determine whether his claim could
proceed. The Employment Tribunal concluded that Mr Boxer was a
worker. The key considerations for the Employment Tribunal in
determining this were:
he signed a contract because he had
no choice: there was no negotiation or tendering process;
he worked five days a week, nine
hours a day, and had to be available during the working day;
while he enjoyed some flexibility in
respect of time off or changing hours, this had to be by
arrangement and with notice;
he was paid a fixed rate for his
work, which was non-negotiable;
he did not have to bear the cost of
any damage in transit or pay insurance; and
not only was he expected to work and
in turn was entitled to expect a steady stream of jobs, he was also
expected to stand by between jobs and wait for the next one.
Mr Boxer's evidence in this case was uncontested as Excel
had gone into liquidation. Nonetheless, the case is a further
example of a (first instance) claim against a courier company and
application of the Court of Appeal decision in Pimlico Plumbers
Ltd v. Smith  EWCA Civ 51. To see our previous blog post
on Pimlico Plumbers Ltd v. Smith  EWCA Civ 51,
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The Court of Appeal has held that where a contract of employment lacks a provision for when notice of termination takes effect, it is effective from when the employee personally takes delivery of the letter containing notice.
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