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Neil Gouldson

neil-gouldsonSenior Associate

Neil joined Bermans in February 2019 and is a senior associate in our employment team.

Neil has a strong track record in the legal services industry specialising in all areas of general employment law advice across a wide range of sectors including regulatory work in care, teaching, NHS, finance/banking and professional sport.

Neil takes a commercial approach with his clients and has an ability to make complex legal issues simple to understand.

He is skilled in:

  • Complex Disability Discrimination claims
  • Large scale redundancy programmes
  • Multi day Employment Tribunal litigation
  • Fitness to practice hearings for GP’s
  • Working with GP Practices
  • High court employment litigation
  • Employee issues on the sale and acquisition of a business
  • Pregnancy/maternity cases

Email: neil.gouldson@bermans.co.uk

Tel:  0151 224 0534

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Claims for conversion against company directors

We recently advised asset financiers as to their rights where a company which had taken numerous items of plant and machinery on Hire Purchase purported to sell the assets to a buyer in the European Union who then sold them on to a buyer in Asia.

The Hirer Company was effectively insolvent but it was clear from the investigations we carried out that the purported sale had been arranged by the sole director of the Company, and that no other individual had any real involvement in the transaction on its behalf.

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Consumer Rights Act may apply to Guarantors of Companies

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 (“CRA”) is an important piece of recent legislation which governs many contracts between traders and consumers, and implements the. EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EC) (“UTD”.) “Consumer” is defined in section 2 (3) of the Act as: –

“an individual acting for purposes that are wholly or mainly outside that individual’s trade, business, craft or profession.”

There is as yet no direct authority on how the definition of consumer applies in the context of security documentation, but the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) has set out the test in the UTD for when it applies to personal Guarantees and security agreements given by an individual to secure debts of a company In Dumitru Tarcău, Ileana Tarcău v Banca Comercială Intesa Sanpaolo România SA (C-74/15) the court held that a personal Guarantee was to be subject to the UTD because it was given by a natural person, acting outside his trade or business, and who had no functional links to the guaranteed company.

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Employment Law: Tribunal fees

The Ministry of Justice has suggested that employment tribunal fees may be reintroduced. The Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Justice said that a balance could be reached between increasing tribunal funding (via fees) and ensuring employees still had access to justice. He said the Unison Supreme Court case which resulted in fees being abolished did not rule out fees completely. What is important is getting the fees right and ensuring that people who cannot afford to pay can still bring a claim.

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Employment Law: ACAS advice on performance management systems

ACAS has published new guidance on performance management. It sets out what performance management is and why it is good for both the business and its employees. It sets out the benefits of good performance management systems. These include having motivated staff, getting the best out of employees, delivering projects effectively, and weeding out poor performance.

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Employment Law: Happy new year for vegans

It looks like it might be a happy new year for vegans. The employment tribunal will decide in March 2019 whether ethical veganism is protected by the Equality Act 2010 as a ‘philosophical belief’, akin to a religion. Jordi Casamitjana will have to show that his ethical veganism meets the legal test: his belief is genuinely held; it is a belief rather than an opinion; it relates to a weighty and substantial aspect of human life; it attains a certain level of seriousness and cogency; and it deserves respect in a democratic society. He claims that he was dismissed by the League Against Cruel Sports because of his philosophical belief in veganism.

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