In a rare instance of a man claiming sex discrimination, John de Belin won £123,000 in damages after one of Britain’s biggest law firms ‘deprived him of his livelihood’.
Mr de Belin, 45, was one of two associates facing redundancy from Eversheds’ property division in Leeds. The other was Angela Reinholz, 40.
To decide who would be sacked, the firm undertook an assessment of both Mr de Belin’s and Mrs Reinholz’s abilities, including financial performance, discipline history and absence records.
Mr de Belin was fired in February 2009 after losing by just half a point, scoring 27 out of 39 in the exercise against Mrs Reinholz’s 27.5.
But he later learned that the test score had been ‘unfairly inflated’ to the advantage of his female colleague.
He also discovered that Mrs Reinholz was given the maximum possible score for her ability to swiftly secure ‘lock-up’ payments from clients – even though she was at home on maternity leave during the period of time she was being assessed.
The Leeds employment tribunal ruled that this effectively tipped the balance in her favour and Mr de Belin lost out.
In the judgment, Judge Jeremy Shulman said: ‘If any other score had been given to Ms Reinholz… she would have been at risk and not him.
‘Eversheds elected to give the maximum notional score for lock-up to Ms Reinholz because it regarded this as the fairest approach, while also trying to avoid a claim against Eversheds by Ms Reinholz. But this clearly worked less favourably to Mr de Belin, who was then put at risk and ultimately dismissed for redundancy.’
So the firm has to make someone redundant and they obviously thought the chances of them being sued would be smaller if they fired the guy. Because guys are just supposed to ‘deal with it’ right?
There is obviously a culture of women suing the shit out of anything that moves, especially in the legal profession. You know, they’d worry about losing their job, then suddenly claim they were sexually harassed for the past 10 million years. Or they commit fraud, get found out and sacked, and then sue for discrimination. Even better, female employee can steal from her bank, gets caught and just blames it all on her boyfriend! Weak vunerable woman when she needs to be eh.
I’ve got an idea. How about we scrap all these regulations and just let companies do their bloody job?