Stringfellows wins unfair dismissal appeal
Former Stringfellows lap dancer Nadine Quashie lost her claim for unfair dismissal after the Court of Appeal found in the nightclub’s favour in December.
For almost two years the case has been making waves in the tabloid press, and in legal and accounting circles because of its implications for other employment status situations, including IR35.
According to the Court of Appeal decision,  EWCA Civ 1735, the case started in December 2008 when the club told Quashie she could no longer work there because it believed she had become involved with drugs on the premises.
Quashie failed in her initial claim for unfair dismissal in 2010 when an employment tribunal ruled that she had been self-employed. But on appeal, her representative John Hendy QC convinced the judge that the commission and nightly fees (and fines, where applicable) demanded by the club amounted to a contract of employment.
“On each night she attended the claimant was obliged to work as directed by the management,” noted tribunal appeal judge McMullen. Taking into account the wider picture including factors such as control and mutual obligations, he ruled Quashie was an employee.
Stringfellows appealed against that decision and argued that since the original tribunal judge had come to a justifiable finding on the basis of the facts presented, the appeal judge was not entitled to overturn the decision.
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