Increase in Employment Tribunal claims and compensation levels

April 4, 2018

Increase in claims

Recent figures from the government indicate that, as expected, the abolition of Tribunal fees in 2017 is having a significant effect on claims. The figures show that cases rose by 90% in the last quarter of 2017 compared with the same period in 2016. 8,173 single claims were brought in the three months from October to December.  This is the highest number of single cases since the third quarter of 2013.

This brings into focus the need for employers to ensure that their contracts of employment, policies and Employee Handbook are up to date and robust, in particular capability, disciplinary and grievance. And that they are applied properly and comprehensively when needed, in line with the ACAS Codes.  See associated Article on Conducting Investigations.

Increase in compensation limits

The annual increases in compensation in the employment tribunals are introduced on 6 April 2018. The new rates apply where the event giving rise to the compensation (such as the termination of employment) occurs on or after 6 April 2018. The most notable changes are as follows:

  • The limit on a week’s pay for the purposes of calculating statutory redundancy payments and the basic award for unfair dismissal has increased from £489 to £508.
  • The maximum statutory redundancy payment and basic award for unfair dismissal have increased from £14,670 to £15,240.
  • The maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal has increased from £80,541 to £83,682.
  • The maximum total compensation for unfair dismissal (i.e., the aggregate of the maximum basic and compensatory awards) has increased from £95,211 to £98,922.

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