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M & P Steelcraft Ltd v (1) Ellis (2) HM Prison Service - clause whose only purpose is to seek to alter the otherwise legal effect of contractual arrangements is void - EAT 22.1.08

As part of his preparation for release from prison, Mr Ellis worked for Steelcraft under a tri-partite agreement between him, Steelcraft, and HMPS. That agreement contained a clause stating that it did not create binding legal relations. On release Mr Ellis was employed by Steelcraft until he was dismissed. To demonstrate the necessary year's continuous service to bring an unfair dismissal claim, he had to establish that he was an employee while on the pre-release arrangement. An employment tribunal found that he was and Steelcraft and HMPS appealed.

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