In a letter to stakeholders HM Courts & Tribunal Service has announced that, subject to parliamentary approval, from Monday 29th July 2013, all cases brought before the employment tribunals (ET) and Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) will be subject to a fee.
There will be two main points at which charges will apply:
For employment tribunal claims, different fee levels will apply, depending on whether the claim is a level 1 or level 2 claim.
Level 1 claims are, in the main, straightforward claims for defined sums, such as unauthorised deductions from wages and redundancy payments. Such claims would attract a fee of £160 when the claim is issued and a further £230 at the hearing stage.
Level 2 claims are those involving more complex issues, including unfair dismissal, discrimination and equal pay. Level 2 claims attract an issue fee of £250 and a hearing fee of £950.
There is also a fee structure for multiple claims. Claims involving more than one and up to ten claimants would be charged twice the applicable fee for a single claim; those involving 11-200 claimants would be charged four times the single few; and those involving over 200 claimants six times the single fee. At the EAT, there would be an appeal fee of £400 and a hearing fee of £1200.
The Government argues that fees can encourage parties to think through whether a formal claim needs to be lodged at a tribunal, or whether it can be settled informally via mediation or conciliation etc. The Government aims to ensure that tribunals ‘are used as the option of last resort to resolve employment disputes’.
Draft Employment Tribunals and the Employment Appeal Tribunal Fees Order 2013 (PDF format, 116K) Download the draft Order from the UK Legislation website.