CASE SUMMARIES 15 January 1996

The following notes of judgments were prepared by the reporters of the All England Law Reports.

Doctor

McCandless v General Medical Council; PC (Lord Goff of Chieveley, Lord Nicholas of Birkenhead, Lord Hoffmann); 11 Dec 1995

Seriously negligent misconduct by a doctor in the treatment of patients could amount to serious professional misconduct and result in erasure of the doctor's name from the register of medical practitioners.

John Mitting QC (Gamlins Storrar Cowdry) for the doctor; Joanna Glynn (Field Fisher Waterhouse) for the GMC.

Employment

Marley UK Ltd v Anderson; CA (Russell, Waite, Schiemann LJJ); 13 Dec 1995

In considering under s 67(2) of the Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act 1978 whether an employee who had presented his unfair dismissal claim outside the three-month time limit had nevertheless presented it "within such further period as the tribunal considers reasonable in a case where it is satisfied that it was not reasonably practicable" for the complaint to be presented sooner, the issues of reasonableness and practicability were both matters to be weighed separately, ground by ground, fact by fact, under each head of unfair dismissal complained of. The fact that an employee was out of time in relation to a complaint based on one set of facts did not preclude his pursuing a complaint based on different facts of which he had later learnt.

David Richardson (Argles & Court, Maidstone) for the employers; John Bowers (Harman & Harman, Canterbury) for the employee.

Evidence

R v M; CA (Crim Div) (Lord Taylor of Gosforth CJ, Kay, Brian Smedley JJ); 21 Nov 1995

An application for a video recording of a complainant's evidence to be played a second time at a criminal trial should be granted only if the request was made specifically by the jury. Such a replay should be discouraged because it was a departure from the normal course of the way in which evidence at a criminal trial was heard, and should only be made if there were exceptional reasons for doing so.

Robin Pearse Wheatley (Registrar of Criminal Appeals) for the appellant; Rebecca Poulet QC (CPS) for the Crown.

Value added tax

Customs and Excise Commissioners v Madgett and another t/a Howden Court Hotel; QBD (Brooke J); 16 Nov 1995

A case, concerning a hotel which hired a coach providing transport for its customers at an inclusive price, was referred to the European Court of Justice under art 177 of the Treaty of Rome to establish the meaning in Community law of the terms "travel agent" and "tour operator". Different VAT tribunals had adopted different approaches to the question and the interpretation of the meaning of those terms could not be resolved without a reference. Customs claimed the hotel was a tour operator subject to the Tour Operators' Margin Scheme (VAT leaflet 709/88).

Jeremy Woolf (Rice-Jones & Smiths) for the taxpayers; Stephen Richards (Customs & Excise Solicitor) for the Crown.

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