The Court of Appeal held that in deciding whether a non-UK employee could bring a British employment claim, the fact his contract was governed by English law was relevant as one factor to be considered.
In Green v SIG Trading (www.bailii.org) the claimant had lived in the Middle East for over 15 years, and was recruited by a UK company as its managing director in Saudi Arabia. He was put on a standard British employment contract governed by English law as this was convenient for the employer. He worked occasionally in the UK.
The employment tribunal held he did not have a sufficiently strong connection with Britain to bring a British employment claim.
The Court of Appeal upheld that decision, but rejected the employer’s argument that s.204 Employment Rights Act 1996 meant the choice of law had no relevance at all in deciding whether a British claim could be brought.
The EAT had previously held (and it was not disputed in the Court of Appeal) that the tribunal could decide that various other links with Britain were for purely pragmatic reasons and that taking into account the wider context they said little about the claimant’s connection with Britain.