Employment Discrimination

Whether employed or a worker, or applying for a position, you will be protected by UK employment discrimination law.  Although all employers and employees should have a proficient knowledge of the Equality Act 2010 (the Act), realistically time makes this impossible for most.  Therefore, if you are an employer concerned about how the Act applies to a particular situation or an employee who feels they have been the victim of discrimination, it is imperative to seek advice and representation from a specialist employment solicitor in good time.

At BDBF, we specialise in employment law for the finance, insurance, legal, health and technology sectors.  Our discrimination lawyers have an in-depth understanding of how the Act applies to these sectors and our clients trust that our advice is up to date, practical and strategically aligned to business culture and customs.

Who does employment discrimination effect?

Discrimination cases represent a high proportion of Employment Tribunal claims.  Employment discrimination can and does happen to anyone, regardless of their education and socio-economic position.  Therefore, employers must ensure their Equality Act 2010 compliance training extends to all levels of the company.  In addition, if an employee feels they are being discriminated against, they should seek legal advice, regardless of the seniority of their position.

What types of employment discrimination are there?

Employment law discrimination can affect anyone on the grounds of one or more of the protected characteristics listed under the Act. Discrimination or harassment can take place in many forms. A summary of the protected characteristics is as follows:

  • Age – ageism is very common in the workplace. Overlooking a person for a promotion due to their age is discrimination, as is refusing to hire older workers.
  • Disability – employers have a duty under the Act to reasonably accommodate the needs of workers with disabilities. For example, during a redundancy process, an employer could breach the Act if they fail to consider how the skills of an individual with a disability could be redeployed into another position.
  • Gender reassignment – for example, treating a person who is absent from work due to recovery from gender reassignment surgery less favourably than someone who is away for another reason.
  • Marriage and civil partnership – a person cannot be discriminated against because they choose to cohabitate rather than marry, or based on the gender, race, religion of their spouse.
  • Pregnancy and maternity – a woman cannot be dismissed for getting pregnant. Nor can they be put first in line for redundancy if they happen to be on maternity leave when cuts are being made.
  • Race – discriminating against a person due to their race is unacceptable. Furthermore, it is racial discrimination if a person is treated unfavourably because they are perceived to be of another race, even if they are not in fact of that race.
  • Sex, Religion, or belief – setting work schedules that prevent people from taking time needed to pray or refusing to allow the wearing of garments particular to a faith, e.g. a Kippah or crucifix necklace, are examples of religious discrimination.
  • Sex – both men and women have a right not to be discriminated as a result of their sex.
  • Sexual orientation – an employee cannot be treated less favourably because of their sexual orientation. Harassment related to sexual orientation is also prohibited.


Why is professional help needed with employment discrimination cases?

Discrimination cases can be complex and stressful.  It is therefore imperative to obtain expert advice and representation, so you are fully supported throughout your discrimination tribunal claim.

How can BDBF help with employment discrimination cases?

At BDBF, we specialise in employment law and have a robust reputation as one of the best employment discrimination law firms in London. We have won some of the highest awards for our clients in discrimination cases. Our team does not simply act for clients; we are committed to changing government policy to ensure anti-discrimination law is strengthened and continues to reflect societal norms as they change.