The EAT held in the recent case of Craig v Bob Lindfield & Sons that there is no implied term as to reasonableness so far as the length of lay off was concerned but also went onto find in this case that the period of four-week’s experienced by Mr Craig was not unreasonable in all the circumstances. As there was no implied term there could be no breach and therefore as there was no repudiatory breach of contract Mr Craig could not claim constructive unfair dismissal.
Legislation provides a scheme for balancing the rights and interests of employer and employee in a downturn in business. S48 Employment Rights Act 1996 provides for a period of lay off or short time working (LOST) during which there is no entitlement to claim a redundancy payment but, thereafter an employee can serve a notice claiming a redundancy payment. As such this was an avenue potentially open to Mr Craig when the criteria were met and his claim for unfair dismissal accordingly failed.