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Contribution In Respect Of Compensation

Volume 983: debated on Wednesday 23 April 1980

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Amendment proposed: No. 72, in page 10, line 15, leave out ' claims ' and insert ' conclusively proves '.—[ Mr. Harold Walker.]

We shall consider at the same time amendment No. 73, in page 10, line 25, leave out' he claims '.

The arguments on these amendments were adduced a few minutes ago by the right hon. Member for Don-caster (Mr. Walker), and I think that the reasons which he advanced are misconceived. He bases his case on the word " claims" in line 15—if the employer—

" claims that he was induced to dismiss the complainant by pressure "
and so on. The right hon. Gentleman supposes that the word " claims" means that that is all that the employer has to do, but in fact he has to establish by evidence that there is substance for his claim.

By seeking to substitute the words " conclusively proves ", the right hon. Gentleman is seeking to add unnecessary words. I quite understand what is in his mind, but no tribunal would act upon the claim and accede to the request that the person whom the employer claimed exercised the pressure should be joined until the employer made good that claim by bringing forward evidence.

He has to prove it already, or he has at least to put forward these matters. It is true that he does not have conclusively to prove, but he has to set up a prima facie case.

So I assure the right hon. Gentleman that his amendment would serve no useful purpose, and I hope that, with that assurance, he will be content to withdraw it.

Amendment negatived.

Amendment made: No. 11, in page 10, line 25, after ' may ', insert

" before the hearing of the complaint".—[Mr. Mayhew.]

Further consideration of the Bill adjourned.—[ Mr. Peter Morrison.]

Bill, as amended (in the Standing Committee), to be further considered this day.