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In a very significant recent case, the Employment Appeals Tribunal held that a limited company that was a member of an LLP could bring a claim, which alleged that the LLP had directly discriminated against the company on the basis of the age of its principal shareholder and director.

Are only individuals protected by the Equality Act?

The Equality Act 2010 prevents discrimination by a person against another person.  Here, the word ‘person’ is defined as including a limited company unless the statute indicates a contrary intention, which the Equality Act does not.  As such, the Employment Appeal Tribunal rejected the argument that only individuals are protected by the Equality Act.

Why is this discrimination case so significant?

This case is significant as it confirms that a company (or other non-natural persons such as LLPs or charities) may complain of discriminatory treatment based on the protected characteristics of individuals associated with it; such as its members, directors or employees.  An example would be a refusal of a business loan to a limited company because of its owners’ ethnic origins.

Employment law advice for businesses

Our employment solicitors specialise in employment law for all sectors of business, and are happy to work with companies and businesses of any size.   To speak to someone today, call our offices using the telephone numbers below.