STEVE Hodgson, former long-serving manager of the Isle of Man’s Padgetts Direct outpost of large Batley-based dealership Padgetts, has been awarded a five-figure compensation package following his departure from the business last year.
A unanimous Employment Tribunal verdict published on 19 April found that Hodgson, who had managed Padgetts’ Manx Suzuki franchise for 12 years, was constructively dismissed in May 2012 — and this amounted to unfair dismissal. Hodgson walked out after a series of confrontations with company director Don Padgett over holiday entitlement, paternity leave and arbitary changes to his pay and conditions. The last of these disputes was accepted by the Tribunal as a “final straw” in his deteriorating relationship with Padgetts.
In addition, the ruling detailed a number of further Employment Act contraventions by Padgetts. Hodgson had never received written terms of employment or subsequent written particulars of changes in his employment status. There had also been unlawful deductions from his wages and he had suffered injury to his feelings through nasty comments made about his personal life. Don Padgett told Hodgson he was: "Too old to do his job, too old to have kids and too old to raise a family."
The Tribunal ordered Padgetts to pay Hodgson a total of more than £26,000 in damages for his mistreatment.