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Posted in: Business services, Employment, News
Date published: 28/07/2017

Since the introduction of extortionate Employment Tribunal fees in 2013, the UK saw a sharp decline in the number of employment cases being brought.

However, one of the UK’s largest trade unions, Unison, has since worked tirelessly to oppose these fees and as a result, in a ground breaking decision, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Wednesday 26 July 2017 that not only were these fees unlawful but they were also discriminatory towards women.

This ruling will provide welcome news to those employees who were denied access to justice by not being able to afford the tribunal fees of up to £1200 in order to take action against their employer for wrong doing.

Furthermore, those that did manage to find the money to pay the over-inflated fees, may now even have those costs reimbursed by the government.

In its Judgment, the Supreme Court highlighted that there was a huge disparity between tribunal fees and those in the small claims court (where it is substantially cheaper to bring a claim). Stating that employment tribunal cases are important for society as a whole, not just the individuals involved, and having fees at the level they were at effectively prevented access to justice.

Baroness Hale also commented in a separate ruling that Type B claims for discrimination cases were unjustly discriminatory to women.

Moving forward it is likely that the government will have to have a major rethink about the tribunal fee structure and the system to file claims as a whole but what is definitely likely is that the government will have to give some serious consideration to repaying the millions of pounds of fees collected since 2013.

For a confidential discussion in your native language about how these changes could affect you, call us today on 0330 107 0107 or email

This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.

Published by:

Marcin DurlakManaging Partner

Employment Law – IMD Solicitors LLP

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