The EAT has held that where a claimant with epilepsy and vitiligo took steps restricting her life due to an unfounded belief that the steps would avoid exacerbating her conditions, this was not a relevant adverse effect when deciding whether she had an EqA disability.
It might be different if the claimant had a distinct mental impairment giving rise to the fears and avoidance behaviour, akin to a phobia. However the claimant here had not argued this.
Based on her own extensive online research, the claimant aimed to avoid various ‘triggers’ such as coffee, alcohol, cosmetics, and contact with cleaning products.
The case was sent back to the tribunal to decide whether other effects of her nocturnal epilepsy and vitiligo were sufficient to make her disabled within the Equality Act.
The case is Primaz v Carl Room Restaurants Ltd t/a McDonald’s Restaurants, www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKEAT/2021/2020-000110.html.