Extension of time granted for filing an appeal to the EAT where employee’s email system defective

7 March 2023

In Hawkes v Oxford Economics Ltd [2022] EAT 179, H was a litigant in person seeking to appeal an Employment Tribunal’s decision that it had no jurisdiction to hear his unfair dismissal claim.

The appeal deadline was 4.00pm on 9 February 2021. At 3.29pm on 9 February 2021 H sent the EAT an email which said it attached various documents, but in fact was missing the notice to appeal.

At 3.33pm H sent a further email which did attach the notice of appeal and the ET’s judgment. The EAT did not receive this second email. It subsequently told H that the notice of appeal and judgment had not been received. The Registrar refused H’s application to extend the time limit.

The EAT held that whilst there was no good reason for H to delay until half an hour before the deadline, the reason for the 3.33pm email not arriving was a technical issue which was not H’s fault. Without a ‘bounceback’, it was generally reasonable to assume that a sent email had been received. The delay was 10 days, with no evidence of procedural abuse, nor could it be said that H’s appeal lacked any prospects of success. H was therefore granted an extension of time to appeal.


David Messling

Call 2017

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