Employment Law: The Christmas Party Conundrum

Posted on by Grant Smith

It’s that time of year again, and as many of us start to either slow down, or speed up significantly, the holiday certainly tends to have a dramatic effect one way or another on businesses up and down the country. No matter what happens though, we all relish the thought of a Christmas party; a celebratory thank you from the company and a big team huddle on a good year well done. This however, does cause a few complications that you may not be aware of. Here’s KJ Conroy’s list of things to make sure you’re covered on before the celebrations get under way.


If you’re allowing employees to bring partners, remember not to discriminate; don’t expect all partners to be of the opposite sex and make sure that everybody is aware that all are invited regardless. This can be an uneven ground, so being clear and transparent from the start will help!

Further Invitations

When those that are away when the party invites get rolled out, make sure you follow up on having those missing receive the invitation. Discrimination against those ill or injured could certainly cause complications if they are perceived to be so from the employee’s standpoint.


Ensure that you book a venue that is accessible for all, after all, you want to ensure everybody from the office can come along. If those that are disabled don’t have access to the venue then it’s back to the drawing board and time to find somewhere else!


It’s best to try and keep a keen eye on the flow of alcohol. Whilst we all enjoy a drink or two, the vast  majority of work parties turned ugly stem from an abuse of alcohol, and generally involve either violence of some description or sexual harassment. Of course, it’s a tricky one to try and enforce, but try to limit alcohol spend for the company as a whole.

Party Environment Complications

Of course, the big difference here is always the atmosphere, and whilst it’s good to allow everyone to relax, you should ensure that any racist, sexist or defamatory jokes of any nature are intolerable and no more appropriate than in the office, despite the differing situation.


KJ Conroy are expert employment solicitors in Birmingham, and on hand to help; so call today!

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