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Employment team successfully obtains one of the highest whistleblowing awards ever made

Posted on 7 July 2022

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Mark Levine and Matthew Wood have successfully advised Vladislav Zabelin on claims against SPI UK Limited (part of the SPI Group of companies) and Mr Yuri Shefler (the majority shareholder of the SPI Group).

Mr Zabelin brought claims for automatic unfair dismissal and whistleblowing detriments. He alleged that he had been dismissed by Mr Shefler in mid-2020 for making protected disclosures ('blowing the whistle') about a plan to reduce salary and bonus awards of employees across the SPI Group following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. The Employment Tribunal ruled in favour of Mr Zabelin in a liability judgment in late 2021.

At a remedy hearing in early 2022, Mr Zabelin sought compensation, inter alia, for lost salary, bonuses and pension contributions he had suffered whilst seeking new employment, and for injury to feelings. In its recent judgment, the Tribunal awarded Mr Zabelin compensation exceeding £1.6 million, which is one of the highest whistleblowing awards ever made by the Employment Tribunal.

The liability and remedy judgments can be read in full here.

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