5 Essex Court

John-Paul Waite

Call 1995


John-Paul has extensive experience acting for public bodies and private companies in the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and Court of Appeal.    He conducts a wide range of advisory work on all aspects of employment law and has a particular knowledge and expertise of the energy sector, having been instructed to act for a major energy distribution company in multiple cases since 2010.   He also has extensive experience in acting for police forces across the UK and is the founding author of the Employment Tribunals Handbook, published by Bloomsbury Professional (5th edition published in 2017).    

John-Paul is currently acting for the Ministry of Defence in the first case to deal with the construction of paragraph 18(2) of Schedule 9 to the Equality Act 2010, the provision which permits indirect discrimination on grounds of sexuality arising from a requirement to be married (and is alleged by the Claimant to be incompatible with the Equal Treatment Directive).    He has appeared in dozens of contested employment claims since being called to the Bar, including claims in the areas of unfair dismissal, discrimination, whistleblowing and TUPE.   Significant employment cases which have been reported in the official law reports include the following:

  • Essop (others) v Home Office (UK Border Agency) [2017] UKSC 27 - acted in the Supreme Court as junior counsel for the Home Office in relation to 50 Trade Union backed claims in which it is alleged that an internal assessment is indirectly discriminatory. The Home Office was successful before the Employment Tribunal whose decision was then overturned by the EAT.   The Court of Appeal allowed the Home Office’s appeal before the Claimants were successful in the Supreme Court. 
  • Cordell v Foreign and Commonwealth Office [2012] ICR 280 – successfully acted for the FCO in the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal in a test case concerning the correct choice of comparator in a claim for direct disability discrimination. The Claimant was supported by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.
  • Watts v High Quality Lifestyles [2006] IRLR 850 – successfully acted for the Claimant test case dealing with the meaning of direct discrimination under the DDA.  Acted for the Claimant, an HIV sufferer who was dismissed from his employment.