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Royal Mail loses appeal over status of agency workers

Posted: 25th August 2020   In: Individual Employment

Royal Mail has lost its appeal over the employment status of some of its agency workers.

The case involved Mr D Kocur and other workers who were supplied to Royal Mail by Angard Staffing Solutions.

The Employment Tribunal heard evidence that Kocur was recruited by Angard as a “flexible resourcing employee” in 2015. His letter of engagement said that he would carry out work when required by Royal Mail.

It said: “You should continue to report to and be managed by Angard but shall report on day-to-day matters to Royal Mail as notified to you from time to time.”

Angard only supplied workers to Royal Mail.

Kocur worked numerous shifts at the Leeds mail centre between 2015 and 2019, averaging 11 hours a week. This was interspersed with longer periods at busy times, such as Christmas. He worked alongside Royal Mail's permanent employees. 

Kocur was suspended from his duties in January 2019. Together with other workers, he took legal action claiming that Royal Mail and Angard had infringed their rights as agency workers.

Royal Mail and Angard submitted that they should not be classified as agency workers. 

The Employment Tribunal found in favour of Kocur and the other claimants, meaning that under the Agency Workers Regulations 2010, they were entitled to the same rights as other workers at Royal Mail, after they had completed a qualifying 12-week period. 

These rights included employment and working conditions, bonuses and annual leave.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal upheld the decision. Judge Simon Auerbach said the judge at the original hearing had assessed Kocur’s contract and correctly concluded that he was an agency worker. 

Please contact Simran Lalli if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of employment law.