Time-wasters should be finedOn 25 Jul 2000 in Personnel Today Most people who apply to tribunals have lost their job. The last thing we should do is to price the tribunals out of the reach of genuinely aggrieved former employees.The Government employs an army of Acas officers. Among their functions is to prevent frivolous cases reaching tribunal. If we recognise there are too many time-wasting cases, we should review the effectiveness of the conciliation service.If employers are worried about the cost and believe some of them are time-wasters, they should use HR to defend the cases, rather then legal services.I’ve been a lay member of the tribunals for around 10 years and I can count the number of time-wasting cases on the fingers of one hand. Conversely, I have known several cases where the employer had accepted at the start of the case that the dismissal was unfair and used the tribunal to determine the amount of compensation. There doesn’t appear to be any element of punitive compensation or costs in those instances.Mark SmithHR managerntl• Not only have we had flippant cases brought against us by individuals, but many are now supported by insurance such as legal expenses. Under the current limitations, there is no incentive for them to seriously consider a client’s case before floating off a claim. The insurance companies are good at setting the level of claim that is commercially attractive for the employer to settle.Name and address supplied• I agree that the DTI should enable the employment tribunals to fine time wasters. I believe everybody will chance their arm now the limit is £50,000 but surely a fine will make people think twice.Kath ThomassonPersonnel manager CV Home Furnishings• I agree with the suggestion of increasing the level of costs awarded for frivolous tribunal applications.However, a tribunal chairperson will hardly ever award a company costs against an ex-employee. I have never known a chairperson ask for a deposit, even in the most hopeless case. There has been many a threat at a review hearing, but it never goes further.While I support the call for some sort of penalty, how would this be collected? Better use of the deposit system would be my ideal, at least then they would have to put the money up front before they could proceed.David PocknellEmployee relations manager• I would strongly support any initiative to deter frivolous and hopeless tribunal claims. I have three cases in the pipeline, two are very weak and the other is a joke. None of them is worth the effort and expense we will incur in contesting them, but we baulk at the idea of settling by paying undeserved awards.The situation on employers’ liability is even worse. Driven by unscrupulous lawyers and “no win, no fee”, this has become a lottery in which insurers pay out settlements for nothing, rather than risk the expense of a legal battle.There should be some kind of forfeit arrangement by which solicitors are penalised for bringing ridiculous claims if they fail to prove their case.Charles PriestleyPersonnel managerPioneer Technology (UK) Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.
The 118-year-old house at 615 Wesley Avenue is considered architecturally and historically significant by the city. By DONALD WITTKOWSKIAn eyesore or historic gem?Unrepairable or a fix-it-upper?A historic home built only 23 years after Ocean City’s founding in 1879 as a seaside resort town by four Methodist ministers awaits its fate amid a fight over whether the deteriorated house should be demolished or saved.The now-empty home is located at 615 Wesley Avenue in the heart of the city’s Historic District, an area that roughly stretches between Third and Eighth streets and Central and Ocean avenues.On Sept. 1, the Ocean City Historic Preservation Commission, which approves demolition, new construction or rehabilitation projects within the district, denied the property owner’s request for permission to tear down the 118-year-old house to make room for a new duplex. Following up on the commission’s action, the city’s administrative officer also refused a demolition permit on Oct. 8.Now the property owner, a group called RJGVB LLC of Shippensburg, Pa., is appealing the denial of the demolition permit to the Ocean City Zoning Board. The zoning board is scheduled to consider the matter at its Dec. 16 meeting, which will be conducted online and by teleconference during the pandemic.The lawyer and an architect representing RJGVB argue that the old house is contaminated by black mold infestation, suffers from major structural defects and has been repeatedly damaged over the years by floodwater.“As the testimony will indicate, the building on the property contains hazardous mold infestation. The building was badly damaged during Superstorm Sandy and no remedial work was ever undertaken,” Avery Teitler, RJGVB’s attorney, wrote in a Nov. 10 letter to the zoning board appealing the denial of the demolition permit.Teitler included reports from an architect and a mold repair expert that describe the home’s deteriorated condition, including the mold contamination. Teitler also said the house has “major structural defects and a single stacked brick foundation that cannot be salvaged.”Overgrown vines and weeds are creeping up the front steps at the old home.George Wray Thomas, an architect representing RJGVB, said the house has been so radically altered and reconstructed over the years that virtually all of its historic features have been lost.“The Mansard roof is the only historical feature remaining and the original slate has been replaced with asphalt shingles,” Thomas wrote in a Jan. 20 letter to the Historic Preservation Commission.The home’s original history dating to 1902 isn’t immediately clear, but over the years it has variously served as the Genevieve Guest House and the Koo-Koo’s Nest bed and breakfast, according to online real estate records.Lately, it has been listed for sale at $999,000. The house includes five bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms within 5,250 square feet of space, according to real estate records.The house has been classified as a “key building” in the Historic District, the highest ranking for historically significant structures, City Deputy Tax Assessor Mike Brady said.Ideally, the Historic Preservation Commission would like to see someone buy the house and restore it.“There’s so much to that original building that is still there. There’s no reason that building should be torn down. The building has a tremendous amount of street presence,” John Loeper, the commission’s chairman, said in a September interview.Built in the Second French Empire architectural style, the four-story house is part of a block of homes on Wesley Avenue dating to the late 19th and early 20th centuries.Although it is empty now, over the years the home served as the Genevieve Guest House and then the Koo-Koo’s Nest bed and breakfast, according to online real estate records.In its current condition, it has a weather-beaten exterior, long vines creeping up its steps and a battered white fence. Much of the facade is obscured by overgrown trees and shrubbery. The light green paint has long since faded, along with the burgundy trim.Loeper said the old house remains in good overall physical condition despite its deteriorated exterior.“The building stands there in the community in the same way it stood the day it was built,” he said.Michael Calafati, the architect representing the Historic Preservation Commission, believes the home should be saved, rehabilitated and reoccupied. He said in a report to the commission that the house is part of the “valuable streetscape” that is becoming “increasingly rare in the historic district and needs to be preserved.”Despite the changes to the house over the years, “the original building fabric does remain and the building’s original shape, form and massing immediately convey the image of a late 19th century Second French Empire Style home with a Mansard roof,” Calafati is quoted as saying in a Historic Preservation Commission resolution supporting the home’s preservation.According to the resolution, Calafati’s report also addresses the concerns about the hazardous mold infestation. The Historic Preservation Commission and Calafati believe the mold can be removed from the house.Environmental cleanup is a “routine undertaking when restoring old structures for a new life; this includes remediation of pervasive mold,” the resolution says, citing Calafati’s report.
Sweden marked their first appearance in the World Cup for 12 years by beating South Korea thanks to a penalty from captain Andreas Granqvist that was awarded after a video assistant referee (VAR) review.There was a short delay for Kim Min-woo’s foul on Viktor Claesson to be analysed on video and for the referee to point to the spot before Granqvist sent goalkeeper Cho Hyun-woo the wrong way.Sweden, who join Mexico at the top of Group F on three points, created the better chances in Nizhny Novgorod.Marcus Berg should have scored midway through the first half but his close range shot was beaten away by Cho, while South Korea did not manage a single shot on target.In a scrappy game, Cho also saved well from Ola Toivonen’s header following a free-kick.South Korea, competing in their ninth successive World Cup, were disappointing and the closest they came to scoring was when Koo Ja-cheol headed into the side netting. The result means Mexico, 1-0 winners over world champions Germany on Sunday, and Sweden have a three-point lead after the first round of matches in Group F.