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Five-fold rise in workers taking their employers to tribunals

The number of workers in Scotland taking employers to task in the Employment Tribunal over unfair pay and conditions has seen a five-fold increase after controversial Employment Tribunal fees were scrapped. The fee regime, which saw employees paying up to £1,200 to pursue a case, was scrapped in July last year following a Supreme Court ruling that the charges were unlawful. Current UK government figures show equal pay cases accounting for the bulk of claims – an increase of 360%. Unfair dismissal claims also increased by 84% over the period, while sex discrimination claims went up by almost 50% and disability discrimination claims increased by 100%.
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Five-fold rise in workers taking their employers to tribunals

Employment Tribunal (ET) quarterly statistics published

In September 2018, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) published its quarterly (April-June 2018) ET statistics. The statistics reveal that the number of single claim cases have more than doubled - up 165% to 10,996 compared to the same quarter in 2017. The number of multiple claim cases have increased by 344% to 42,700 compared to the same quarter in 2017. The trajectory of claims increasing continues from earlier this year (January-March 2018) – where single claim cases increased by 118% and multiple claim cases increased by 40% compared to the same quarter in 2017.
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Employment Tribunal (ET) quarterly statistics published

Only 20 per cent of tribunal fees have been refunded since Supreme Court ruling

Following the Supreme Court ruling which declared tribunal fees unlawful, the government pledged to refund those who had paid tribunal fees between 29 July 2013 and 26 July 2017. An official refund programme was set up in October 2017 to handle the process.
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Only 20 per cent of tribunal fees have been refunded since Supreme Court ruling

Unfair Dismissal: extending the date of dismissal by the statutory notice period

The recent case of Lancaster & Duke v. Wileman is a useful reminder to employers that terminating an employee's employment in the week before they gain two years' continuous service may still enable an employee to claim that they have the requisite qualifying service to bring a claim for ordinary unfair dismissal.
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Unfair Dismissal: extending the date of dismissal by the statutory notice period

Acas Annual Report

Acas has issued its first annual report since the July 2017 Supreme Court judgment declaring employment tribunal fees unlawful (a previous blog post on the possible effects of that decision can be found here).
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Acas Annual Report

Employment tribunal fees – what does the future hold for employment tribunals?

When the Supreme Court reached its landmark decision on the legality of employment tribunal (ET) fees last summer (we previously blogged about this here) the court reviewed the evidence regarding the effect of fees on ET claims and noted there had been "a dramatic and persistent fall in the number of claims" since fees were controversially introduced in 2013.
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Employment tribunal fees – what does the future hold for employment tribunals?

Vento bands increase announced

The Presidents of the Employment Tribunals in England & Wales and Scotland have issued new guidance updating the bands of awards for “injury to feelings”, in the event that employees suffer from discrimination in the workplace.

The compensation available for injury to feelings is divided into four categories, depending on the seriousness of the discrimination that occurred, known as the Vento bands. The increased Vento bands, which will be effective for any claims issued on or after 6 April 2018, will be as follows: £900 to £8,600 for less serious cases (the lower band), £8,600 to £25,700 for serious cases (the middle band) and £25,700 to £42,900 for the most serious cases (the upper band). Compensation over £42,900 can be awarded by the Employment Tribunal in exceptional cases.

This increase should act as a reminder for employers to make sure that they are taking all reasonable steps to prevent discrimination in the workplace, including implementing up-to-date equal opportunities and anti-bullying and harassment policies, and carrying out regular diversity training.

Vento bands increase announced

Timing and permission to amend an ET1

In the recent case of Galilee v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis the EAT held that the doctrine of 'relation back', whereby amendments take effect from the date of the original document which it amended, does not apply in the tribunal.
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Timing and permission to amend an ET1

Uber appeals to Supreme Court

Uber presented its application to the Supreme Court to appeal the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) decision that its drivers are workers and should have associated rights.
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Uber appeals to Supreme Court

Supreme Court rules that embassy staff are not excluded by state immunity

In the recent case of Benkharbouche v. Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs & Anor the Supreme Court agreed with the EAT and the Court of Appeal and unanimously held that sections 4(2)(b) and 16(1)(a) of the State Immunity Act 1978 (SIA) cannot protect embassies from Employment Tribunal claims brought by domestic staff in the UK.
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Supreme Court rules that embassy staff are not excluded by state immunity