The Ministry of Justice has now published the results of its consultation on the introduction of fees in the Employment Tribunal as discussed in this blog back in November 2011.
As predicted, those wishing to make a claim to the Employment Tribunal will now have to pay a fixed fee. Interestingly, the MOJ have now stated that the rationale behind this is purely in the interests of saving taxpayers money as opposed to their previously stated reasoning that it would reduce more spurious claims and thereby assist businesses.
The final fee structure proposed separates claims into two levels:
Level One – sums due on termination of employment e.g. unpaid wages, payment in lieu of notice and redundancy payments
Issue Fee: £160
Hearing Fee: £230
Level Two – include unfair dismissal, discrimination, equal pay and claims arising from Public Information Disclosure Act
Issue Fee: £250
Hearing Fee: £950
Fees will also be payable on various other applications including Review of Default Judgment (£100), Application to dismiss following settlement (£60) and Mediation by the judiciary (£600).
The Government have indicated that a remission on these fees will be available for those on lower incomes in line with the current civil remission system. However this system as a whole is currently under review and the consultation on this matter will not be published until later this year. Further it is not yet clear how wide ranging these potential remissions will be given that in many employment cases (all unfair dismissals for example) the “low income” test will be entirely inapplicable.
The fees are due to be introduced in Summer 2013 although the Government has committed itself to reviewing the fee structure once implemented.
By Employment & Family Solicitor Amy Walker.