Introduction of tribunal fees results in a 55 percent reduction in claims for unfair dismissal

2014-01-13 Jennifer Renney-Butland posted:

Claims for unfair dismissal and other complaints against employers have fallen by 55% in the last 6 months following the introduction of tribunal fees last summer. The sharp drop in the number of applications reflects the imposition of charges for lodging claims and attending hearings in the Employment Tribunal.

Claimants now have to pay a fee of £250 to launch an unfair dismissal claim and £950 for a tribunal hearing. The length of service required has also been raised to 2 years for most claims.

The Ministry of Justice argues that the charges for the Employment Tribunal Service will save millions of pounds a year. The union Unison, however, launched a judicial review in October 2013 challenging the legality of the charges; the High Court is due to give judgment soon.

Employers have welcomed the change as they are less likely to face a claim for unfair dismissal. Sacked employees feel the new rules are unfair as they often cannot afford to take action when they are out of work.

The new system of tribunal fees is designed to encourage employees and their employer to settle differences by and avoiding tribunal proceedings altogether. However, there is a 3 month deadline for issuing proceedings from the date of dismissal, so time is of the essence.

Whether you are a business or an employee experiencing a difficult situation in the workplace, Renney and Co Solicitors can advise you about how to best tackle the issues. We specialise in all aspects of employment law including advising on disciplinary action, suspension from work, changes to terms of employment, whistleblowing, discrimination, harassment, handling stress or bullying, as well as wrongful, unfair and constructive dismissal. Whatever your query, we are always available to help.

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