Final Written Warnings

In Perrys Motor Sales Ltd v Edwards, the EAT has held that an employment tribunal erred by questioning the validity of an earlier final written warning when considering whether a claimant’s dismissal was unfair.


The claimant had not complained about the warning in his claim form and it had not been put as an issue before the tribunal. Notwithstanding this, the tribunal took it upon itself to look behind the warning, make findings as to what it really related to and whether it had fallen within the permissible range. This was an error of law on two counts.


First, the tribunal had engaged in determining a point that had not been in issue before it and, secondly, it had applied the wrong test, asking itself whether the warning fell within the range of reasonable responses rather than whether it had been issued for an oblique motive or was manifestly inappropriate, absent good faith and without grounds for making it.


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