Thursday, 17 April 2014

Are Employment Tribunals getting more expensive?

Employers and the taxpayer were promised savings following the introduction of tribunal fees but has that been the case? Despite an initial fall in the volume of Tribunal applications since fees were introduced last July, the complexity of cases and therefore duration and costs are eroding anticipated cost savings.

Whilst many tenuous, malicious or spurious claims are deterred by up-front fees the remainder are being up-scaled to ensure awards will cover costs. The latest tribunal statistics show a 40% increase in complaints per application from an average of 1.8 to 2.5 (during 2013). This is the unintended result of introducing fees that can run to several thousand pounds for something like an unfair dismissal case that goes all the way to an appeal hearing.

As a result employers are facing complex and aggravated complaints which expose them to inescapable legal fees and potentially unlimited compensation awards that have the potential to damage their business.

Recent reports highlighting extended and complex cases concerning whistle-blowing, sexual harassment and equal pay show how time consuming and damaging these kinds of cases can be to the business. Resulting bad publicity has added to the problems for the organisations concerned.

If your commercial customers have our commercial legal protection policy they will be cushioned against such awards, legal costs as well as any tribunal fees awarded against them. With a successful defence, all their costs would be indemnified and a stressful situation averted.

David Haynes
Head of Underwriting & Marketing

No comments:

Post a Comment