Recruitment vs Age

A recent employment tribunal has awarded £3,000 following an age discrimination case. The employee was demoted at work by managers who used the reason that she was ‘only 21’ – despite having been hired to run a kitchen showroom. She was left devastated when told that the business was searching for someone older and the job ‘was too much responsibility’ for someone her age.

The employment tribunal found that the employee was the victim of age discrimination and awarded her £2,002.50 for breach of contract and £1,000 for injury to feelings.

This acts as an important reminder to employers that age discrimination is not permitted whether a person is young or old.

Fiduciary duties are duties which mainly refer to directors within a company. These duties require directors to adhere to a certain discipline of loyalty; over and above their normal duties towards their company. As such they are expected to continuously act in the best interest of the company and be selfless in order to put the company’s priorities and achievements first. This degree of loyalty is what separates an employee and a director’s duties within a company.

Typical fiduciary duties which directors are expected to abide by are:
– To act in good faith to the interest of the company
– To avoid conflict of interest
– To not misuse their position of power by making unauthorised personal profits
– To promote the success and growth of the company

However fiduciary duties are not limited to this list and can involve many other duties which refer to the interests of the company. Additionally, if a director resigns from a company their fiduciary duties do not necessarily end at the time of resignation, typically they are expected to continue their duties for some time following resignation.

If a fiduciary duty is broken by a director, it can be considered a breach of their fiduciary duties. A breach of duties can be extremely costly for a company in terms of finances as well as the company’s reputation. Therefore, if a breach occurs, the company should follow the normal ACAS disciplinary procedure to investigate the breach. This process would constitute a disciplinary hearing and outcome, with an opportunity to appeal against the disciplinary outcome.

Additionally, in some cases the breach may have caused a loss for the company. In this situation, once the director has been dismissed from the company, the company can take legal action in order to recover their losses. Before taking legal action, the company should be clear of:
1. The duties that the director had
2. The breach of the duty by the director, such as misuse of influential position
3. The damage caused by the breach

This will enhance the evidence and position of power for the company and therefore result in a higher chance of success in recovering the losses.

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