Break doesn’t break continuity of employment

A 7 day break in employment is normally sufficient to break continunity of employment.  This can be very important in knowing whether an employee has the right not to be unfairly dismissed, a right which ordinarily accrues only after one year’s continuous employment.

However, in Hussain v Acorn Independent College, the Employment Appeals Tribunal has held that a short break between two contracts, where the reason for the break is a temporary cessation of work, does not necessarily constitute a break in continuity of employment.

The facts here concerned a summer break for a teacher, Mr Hussain.  The significant aspect of Mr Hussain’s break was that it was typical and forseen that he was expected to return to work at the end of the summer time, but there is no reason why this decision should be limited to teachers.  Those concerned with businesses where short breaks with the expected return of the employee to the same employment are typical should be concerned to know more about this decision.

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