Discrimination: Damages Should be Apportioned


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Posted on 29 Oct 2010

In Thaine v London School of Economics, the EAT has confirmed that when an employee's psychiatric injury has been caused by a number of factors, including discrimination for which the employer is liable, the compensation should be reduced to reflect the extent to which the other factors contributed to the employee's ill-health. 

It was found that there had been a number of causes for Ms Thaine’s ill health, including the fact that the employer had unlawfully discriminated against her.  However, the other "concurrent causes" for which the LSE was not liable (including events in the employee's personal life and her erroneous belief that she had been discriminated against in other ways) should be taken into consideration. Therefore, as it was found that the unlawful discrimination had contributed to Ms Thaine's ill-health by only 40%, the ET reduced the compensation it would have awarded by 60%.  This is a useful judgment for employers.

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