Former Crown advocate was unfairly dismissed by States

A FORMER Crown advocate has been paid £66,000 after the States dismissed him unfairly and without good reason.

Frederic Raffray worked for government from 2000 until 2019, and became a Crown advocate in 2004. (Picture of the Court building by Sophie Rabey, 29457246)
Frederic Raffray worked for government from 2000 until 2019, and became a Crown advocate in 2004. (Picture of the Court building by Sophie Rabey, 29457246)

Frederic Raffray worked for government from 2000 until 2019, and became a Crown advocate in 2004. He was dismissed in December 2019.

The States contested the case initially, but then withdrew its defence and agreed to pay Mr Raffray six months’ salary.

However, the States contested his claim to pay six months’ pension contributions as part of the award.

An employment and discrimination tribunal heard how Mr Raffray had been in a final salary pension scheme, which had been changed by the States to one based on career average salaries, instead of an individual’s actual salary. A defined contribution scheme was introduced later to top up the amount of contribution for higher-earning staff.

Membership of the defined contribution scheme was compulsory and it was mandatory for Mr Raffray to make contributions into it.

He argued that he could choose how the money was invested and could take a lump sum from the pension. But the States said the money was given to a third-party pension administrator, rather than to Mr Raffray.

The tribunal agreed with the States, determining unanimously that the employer pension contributions in respect of the defined contribution scheme did not fall within the meaning of pay as set out in the law and therefore should not be included in the calculation of any award.

On the unfair dismissal, Mr Raffray’s case was that the States did not undertake any form of process to reach the decision to terminate his employment and dismissed him without good reason and without any process.

The States did not challenge these claims.

‘The burden of proof fell to the respondent [the States] to show the reason for dismissal was a potentially fair one and the procedure followed was also fair in the circumstances, including the size and administrative resources of the employer’s undertaking,’ tribunal chairman Paula Brierley said in the decision notice.

‘However, the respondent had withdrawn its defence of the claims raised by the applicant. For the reasons set out above, the tribunal unanimously concludes, on the balance of probabilities, that the applicant was dismissed unfairly.’

Mr Raffray was awarded £66,094.50.

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