“Having a go” in Employment Tribunal is getting harder

The Government is about to introduce fees to applicants who want to bring an Employment Tribunal claim against their employer. There will be a range of fees covering different types of claims ranging from £160 (for an initial issue) to £950 (for a hearing). This will change the scene from where it is now (where an employee has nothing to lose by filing a claim). It will also encourage settlements as, again at present, the employee has little to lose by forcing a hearing.

Perhaps even better news is the increasing tendency for Tribunals to award substantial costs where employees (and perhaps their representatives) seek to force an employer to settle by creating masses of paperwork and threatening a long drawn out case. In one such instance recently the Employment Appeals Tribunal (the next level above a Tribunal) has backed a Tribunals award of costs in a 20 day case. The claimant has been ordered to pay one third of the respondents eye-watering costs of £260,000.

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