Jinfo BlogCourt ruling offers further protection to whistle

Thursday, 3rd May 2007 Sign in to MyJinfo or create an account be able to star items Click for printable version Subscribe via RSS to get updates as soon as Blog items are added Tweet about this item on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn

By Tim Buckley Owen

« Blog


Employees who feel impelled to report on malpractice in corporations or public bodies, but are worried about possible dismissal as a result, appear to have received further protection from a ruling by the Court of Appeal in London. In the case of Babula v Waltham Forest College (http://www.lawreports.co.uk/WLRD/2007/CACIV/mar0.3.htm), Lord Justice Ward ruled that, where an employee made a claim for unfair dismissal as a result of having made a whistleblowing ‘protected disclosure’ under the Employment Rights Act 1996, it was sufficient that he ‘reasonably believed the matters that he relied on amounted to a criminal offence, or founded a legal obligation’. The employee did not have to be able to point to an actual criminal offence or to an actual legal obligation in order to claim protection under the law. The Financial Times reported (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/27662d64-d10a-11db-836a-000b5df10621.html) that this should encourage more whistleblowers to come forward because up to now there was an alternative argument that, in order for a whistleblowing employee to be legally protected, an actual offence would need to have occurred or be about to do so. That argument was thrown out by Lord Justice Wall, with the support of his two fellow Appeal Court judges. ‘The purpose of the statute… is to encourage responsible whistleblowing,’ he said.

« Blog

Benefit from our research

Content and Community

Connect your team with the practical tools, original research and expertise to build and support information strategy in your organisation.

A Jinfo Subscription gives access to all Content (articles, reports, webinars) and Community.

Subscription benefits


Our proven processes, resources and guidance will help your team make the shift from transaction centre to strategic asset.

Read case studies, and start the conversation.

Consulting benefits