The company, Liddell’s Coaches, had five 12-month contracts to transport children to different locations while their school was being rebuilt. It lost four of the contracts when the time came to re-tender.

It therefore laid off one its drivers, assuming that he would transfer to the new bus company under TUPE. However, the new company did not accept the driver as an employee.

The driver then claimed he had been unfairly dismissed by Liddell’s.

The issue centred on whether a transfer under TUPE had taken place. TUPE regulations specify that its provisions do not apply if the work or services involved are in connection with “a single specific event or task of short-term duration”.

Liddell’s contract had been for 12 months. The tribunal said that cont
racts of this nature were normally for periods of three to five years.

It held that Liddell’s contract related to a single specific event and was of short-term duration. TUPE therefore did not apply.

That decision has been upheld by the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Please contact us if you would like more information about TUPE regulations or any aspect of employment law.

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