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Defending Employment Tribunal Claims

defending employment tribunal claimsNot all employment relationships end well. Some dismissals and resignations result in Employment Tribunal claims. If you find yourself in this situation, we can help with defending Employment Tribunal claims. We can also negotiate with ACAS or represent you in Judicial Mediation or other alternative dispute resolution.

Claims in the Employment Tribunal include:

  • Unfair Dismissal
  • Constructive Dismissal
  • Sex Discrimination
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Pregnancy/Maternity Discrimination
  • Race Discrimination
  • Racial Harassment
  • Age Discrimination
  • Harassment related to Age
  • Disability Discrimination
  • Failure to make reasonable adjustments for a disabled worker
  • Harassment related to disability
  • Sexual Orientation Discrimination
  • Sexual Orientation Harassment
  • Discrimination because of Religion or Belief
  • Harassment related to Religion or Belief
  • Discrimination because of Gender Reassignment
  • Harassment related to Gender Reassignment
  • Discrimination because of marriage or civil partnership
  • Victimisation because the Claimant complained about discrimination
  • Equal pay
  • Victimisation because the Claimant claims to be a whistleblower
  • Failure to follow the TUPE regulations
  • Unpaid wages
  • Unpaid holiday
  • Notice pay
  • Redundancy pay
  • Refusal of Flexible Working requests

If you require specialist legal advice or assistance in relation to defending an Employment Tribunal claim get in touch with our experienced Employment Solicitors today by calling 0800 086 2929, emailing info@elitelawsolicitors.co.uk or by completing our Free Online Enquiry Form.

What is the time limit to bring a claim in the Employment Tribunal?

Most Employment Tribunal claims have a short time limit of three months less one day. That is not the deadline to bring a claim before the Employment Tribunal, but to contact ACAS for Early Conciliation, which is the compulsory first step in the majority of cases. The deadline is paused during Early Conciliation and for at least a month afterwards.

Who are ACAS?

ACAS are a governmental body set up to, amongst other things, help resolve employment disputes. They act as a go-between between employee and employer to try to reach a settlement of the dispute. This happens before Employment Tribunal proceedings are issued, in Early Conciliation, and during a claim right up to the final hearing. If agreement is reached, ACAS record that in a document known as a COT3, which can be enforced like an Employment Tribunal judgment.

What is Early Conciliation?

Early Conciliation was introduced to try to reduce the number of employment disputes reaching the Employment Tribunal. It is compulsory to at least contact ACAS before bringing most Employment Tribunal claims. The deadline to contact ACAS in most cases is three months less one day from the date of the thing complained about. The employee fills out a form giving basic information about the dispute. ACAS then contact the employer to see if they are prepared to negotiate to settle the dispute. If settlement is reached, it is recorded in a COT3. If no settlement is reached, ACAS issue an Early Conciliation Certificate that allows the employee to bring their claim to the Employment Tribunal.

What compensation can an Employment Tribunal award?

Compensation varies according to the type of claim. Generally, the Employment Tribunal is putting the Claimant in the position that they would have been if their employer had followed the law correctly. So in a claim for unpaid wages, holiday pay, notice pay or redundancy pay, the Employment Tribunal judgment will be for the unpaid sum. For unfair dismissal or constructive dismissal, the Employment Tribunal will award loss of earnings and in most cases a Basic Award, which is calculated in the same way as a statutory redundancy payment. In discrimination cases and some whistleblowing cases, the Employment Tribunal will also compensate the Claimant for injury to feelings.

Who pays the legal fees in an Employment Tribunal claim?

In most cases, each party pays their own legal fees no matter who is successful. This can sometimes mean that it might cost more in legal fees to defend a claim than to pay the sum the Claimant is claiming.

Employment Tribunals can order that one party pays a contribution to the other party’s legal fees if they consider that the claim or response has no realistic prospect of success or that the party has acted unreasonably in bringing or defending the claim.

What is Judicial Mediation?

Judicial Mediation was set up to assist more Employment Tribunal litigants to reach settlement of their disputes. A day is set aside for both parties to speak with a Judge about how settlement can be reached. The Judge will usually speak with the Claimant first to ask what they are looking for, and then to the Respondent employer to see what they are prepared to offer. There is then back and forth to see if agreement can be reached. If so, ACAS are asked to record the deal in a COT3. If not, the claim proceeds to a final hearing, but the Judicial Mediation Judge plays no further part in the case. Judicial Mediations now mostly take place remotely using the Courts’ remote video software.

How Elite Law Solicitors can help

At Elite Law Solicitors, our experienced Employment Solicitors can help you defend a claim in the Employment Tribunal. We can also negotiate with ACAS or represent you in Judicial Mediation or other alternative dispute resolution.

To book an initial consultation, simply call 0800 086 2929, email info@elitelawsolicitors.co.uk or complete our Free Online Enquiry Form.

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