I Lab Facilities Ltd v (1) Metcalfe (2) RKT Ltd (3) ILUK (4) Ticketlamp Ltd - No obligation to inform/ consult where there is no transfer [2013] EAT

No breach of obligation to inform and consult where there has been no relevant transfer

This is an appeal against an ET decision on a claim for a breach of the information and consultation obligations under regulation 13 of the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (“TUPE”).

The ten Claimants (Mr Metcalfe and others) were employed by a company called I Lab (UK) Ltd (“ILUK”) which provided services to the film and television industry. Up to early 2009 it specialised in “rushes” work. Rushes are the first version of a piece of filming, produced on a rough-and-ready basis, typically overnight. In April 2009 ILUK “merged” with RKT Post Production Ltd, which specialised in post-production work. Post-production is also concerned with work on shot footage, but the work is more sophisticated and less immediate: one consequence is that it is typically done during normal working hours in the day. The effect of the merger was that RKT’s workforce became employees of ILUK: “the post-production employees”. The merger reflected the fact that there was a degree of overlap between the two businesses, and some scope for pooling of resources and access to each others’ clients. Nevertheless, the core activities of the two previous businesses remained distinct, with the original rushes staff and the post-production staff working – subject to one or two exceptions – in different premises and doing different kinds of work at different hours.

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