Developer employment case settled

Original ERA decision overturned and confidential settlement made
  • David Watson (Unknown Publication)
  • 08 September, 2010 22:00

Software developer Paul Gordon and his former employer, Student Management Software Solutions (SMSS), have reached a confidential settlement, after an Employment Relations Authority determination that found in Gordon's favour was overturned by the Employment Court.

The original ERA determination, made in March, awarded Gordon $9500 for hurt and humiliation, along with some wages from the time of his dismissal from SMSS and the date of the determination.

The ERA awarded Gordon the money after it found SMSS had not properly investigated issues around his work for other organisations, as well as whether a tool he had developed while employed by SMSS was his or the intellectual property of SMSS.

After the ERA determination was issued SMSS appealed to the Employment Court, challenging the determination.

Following a preliminary hearing at the Employment Court in May, chief judge GL Colgan noted that SMSS’ counsel had “identified comprehensively a number of elements of the Authority’s determination that he submitted were erroneous and has, in my assessment, established arguable cases that satisfy the test of genuine and substantial grounds of appeal”.

Colgan also issued instructions that further mediation be undertaken. On August 2, the case was concluded, with Colgan noting: “The determination of the Employment Relations Authority in this matter is set aside and this judgement is given in substitution for it.” The terms of the new judgement are confidential as the matter was settled at mediation.