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Mon 17 Oct 2011

Employment Law Update: Change in fees for Tribunals from 2013

Employment Law Update: Change in fees for Tribunals from 2013

Introduction

Chancellor George Osborne has announced that from April 2013 there will be, for the first time ever, a fee for the lodging of an employment tribunal claim.

The amount of the fee and how it should be paid will be subject to consultation starting at the end of November 2011 but it is expected that the fees will start to be charged from April 2013.

Results of the changes

Currently there is no fee for an applicant who wants to make an employment tribunal claim. Under the new scheme, employees will face a fee of between £150 and £250 for lodging a claim against their employer, and a further £1,000 for proceeding to a hearing.

Fees will be even higher for cases where damages of more than £30,000 are sought, although the low-paid, or those without an income, may have the fee waived or reduced at the start of the process on a sliding scale basis.

This comes further to the Chancellor’s confirmation that, from 6 April 2012, the qualifying period for a claim for unfair dismissal will increase from one to two years.

Why bring in these changes?

More than 80 per cent of tribunal claims lodged do not proceed to a hearing, with nearly half of those withdrawn by the claimant as stated by the Treasury. Employers, however, are still faced with the need to spend time and money preparing a defence.

While the new rules may be seen as a disincentive to employees from bringing a claim, it should be noted that there will be a refund of fees for any individual who wins their case.

For further information and advice please contact

Keith Maynard
T: 020 7644 7278
F: 020 7625 7309
E: kmaynard@jpclaw.co.uk

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