News

Whistleblowing

Note by Consultant Employment Law Barrister, Kevin Harris (March 2016)

The Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 gives protection to those who report wrong doing at work, this is commonly known as ‘whistleblowing.’ The protection that Act gives is actually much more limited than people realise and if you do ‘blow the whistle’ you must carefully formulate it so that you gain protection.

At Simons Rodkin we have helped people in a variety of sectors, including financial services, public sector organisation and private companies with their claims, from helping draft an initial letter setting out the complaint to representation at the tribunal.

The Act covers not just employees, but also company directors, agency workers, freelancers, though not the genuinely self-employed.

The act protects you from suffering a detriment, which can be anything from being dismissed, being disciplined, overlooked for promotion, not being sent on a training course, anything which you can demonstrate is objectively a disadvantage to you.

To be protected you do not need to show that wrong doing has occurred, just that you had a reasonable belief that wrongdoing has occurred. Wrongdoing falls into specific categories of: criminal offences; failing to fulfil legal obligations; a miscarriage of justice; a danger to health and safety; damage to the environment; or a cover up of one of the other categories. You must provide information to show that wrongdoing has occurred a bare allegation is not enough.

The disclosure must also be ‘in the public interest’ so if the disclosure relates only to a worker’s own contract the act may not apply. It should also be made ‘in good faith’ otherwise your compensation may be affected.

Disclosure will usually have to be to your employer initially, or certain specific organisation e.g. HSE if the matter relates to safety. You may not have protection if you make a disclosure to the press or on social media in the first instances.

Although supposed to provide protection for all ‘whistle blowers’ the Act is so convoluted that it may not protect many people who genuinely believe that they have made a disclosure in the public interest.

If you require advice or assistance at whatever stage of the process you have reached please contact us. There will be no charge for an initial telephone discussion.

Telephone Numbers

Central London Office- 32 Bloomsbury Street, WC1, Telephone Number 0207 112 8841

Finchley North London Office , 212 Regents Park Road, Finchley, London N3 3HP
Telephone Number 0208 446 6223

Please ask for Lawrence Rodkin (Partner) or Kevin Harris (Consultant Barrister)

RECENT POSTS

What Is Insolvency Finance?

Debt Collection By Small Businesses

Litigation Funding

Company Directors / Bank and
other Guarantees

Various ways of financing the bringing of
an Employment Tribunal Claim

Preliminary note in relation to annulment
of bankruptcy orders

Stress at Work caused by bullying/harassment at work

Compromise Agreements –
A Preliminary Note to Employees

How to Minimize Stress in the Workplace When a Job Deadline Approaches

Stress at Work, a guidance note to Employers

Update – Security Clearance

The effect of existing employment non competition covenants when setting up your own business in competition with a former employer

Notes of Engagement of Self Employed Consultants/Contractors

Keep informed by joining us on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

020 7112 8841

item4
item5
item6

Keep informed by joining us on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn

item8

020 8446 6223

020 7112 8841

item4 item5 item6