Opinion

Proceeds of crime? Not.

What should employers do with staff on remand pending criminal proceedings? The employee can't work - should they be paid? 

Well in the case of Burns v Santander UK plc, the Employment Appeals Tribunal said that the lower Tribunal was right to throw out a claim by Burns for 'unlawful deduction of wages'.

Apparently Burns had been arrested and charged with some 13 offences including assault on a prostitute. He was held for six months while he awaited trial during which time he wasn't paid. He was subsequently only convicted of common assault and a assault with intent to commit a sexual assault. The sentence was non-custodial.

Burns used the argument that he should be paid whilst being held because - in theory at least - he was ready and willing to work to his contract and it was the unavoidable incarceration that prevented his working. However the EAT said that the remand was a result of his voluntary actions and therefore he shouldn't be paid.

This was first published in August 2011

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