Benefits of seeking professional support with an Employment Tribunal claim
Save time and money defending a claim – Reduce time spent on trying to research how to best run a defence when our experienced employment solicitors can manage the defence for you from an early stage. Meanwhile, you can continue to focus your time and energy on running your business.
Reduce the risk of a claim costing you more than it should – Involving a specialist employment solicitor from an early stage ensures that you follow the Employment Tribunal claims procedure and do not risk a default judgment against you or provide other advantages to an employee making a claim against your business.
Honest and transparent advice – We will seek to find and exploit advantages your defence to a claim has but will also be honest with you about the potential value of any claim against your business and its chance of success.
Pragmatic guidance for the best possible resolution – If your prospects of successfully defending or counterclaiming are not good, we might suggest settlement and can expertly guide you. As the Employment Tribunal is a public forum it is critical to balance risks to your business and impact of a loss at an Employment Tribunal on your business’ reputation.
Access to a team of experienced negotiators and trusted contacts – Our experienced employment solicitors are familiar and confident discussing and negotiating directly with the claimant employee or their representative, or through ACAS. We not only have an experienced team of employment solicitors here at Harper James – we have also built up a range of highly experienced contacts such as barristers who specialise in particular types of employment claims, which you can benefit from.
Our Employment tribunal fees
Our pricing for bringing and defending claims for unfair or wrongful dismissal are shown in the table below.
We charge based on an hourly rate which varies depending on the service plan you choose when you engage with us. We have three service plans, City, Enterprise and On-Demand.
|Service provided||Hourly rates (ex VAT)||Average hours to complete||Average costs (ex VAT)|
|City plan||Enterprise plan||On-Demand plan||City plan||Enterprise plan||On-Demand plan|
|Low complexity case||£250||£125||£150 – £195*||60-80 hours||£15000 – £20000||£7500 – £10000||£11700 – £15600*|
|Medium complexity case||£250||£125||£150 – £195*||Up to 110 hours||£27500||£13,750||£21450*|
|High complexity case||£250||£125||£150 – £195*||Up to 170 hours||£42500||£21,250||£33150*|
*On-Demand rates vary depending on the annual hours package purchased. Average costs shown use the highest hourly rate of £195.
For clarity this pricing does not apply to claims for automatic unfair dismissal (for example where an employee has been dismissed after having blown the whistle on their employer) or claims where allegations of discrimination are involved.
Factors that could make a case more complex include:
- If it is necessary to make or defend applications to amend claims or to provide further information about an existing claim;
- Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person;
- Making or defending a costs application;
- Number and complexity of preliminary issues;
- The number of witnesses and documents;
- The number of days for which the Tribunal hearing is listed;
- The reasons for dismissal;
- Complex compensation considerations (such as the calculation of final salary pension schemes or complex benefit structures);
- The amount and nature of what directions are issued by the Employment Tribunal.
If we recommend, and you agree, that we attend hearings in addition to counsel, or if you wish us to attend, there will be an additional charge for attending a Tribunal Hearing of between £750 to £1500 per day (ex VAT). Generally, we would anticipate a Tribunal hearing for unfair or wrongful dismissal lasting in the region of 2-15 days depending on the complexity of your case.
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Counsel’s fees for giving opinions and attending hearings, experts fees, copying, printing and courier/postal charges. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process. However, you will be required to pay the amount of the disbursements, up front, before the cost of those disbursements are incurred.
Counsel’s fees estimated between £1200 to £2500 per day (ex VAT), depending on experience of the advocate for attending a Tribunal Hearing (including preparation).
The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:
- Taking your initial instructions, reviewing the papers and advising you on merits and likely compensation (this is likely to be revisited throughout the matter and subject to change);
- Entering into pre-claim conciliation where this is mandatory to explore whether a settlement can be reached;
- Preparing claim or response;
- Reviewing and advising on claim or response from other party;
- Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process;
- preparing or considering a schedule of loss;
- Preparing for (and attending) a Preliminary Hearing;
- Exchanging documents with the other party and agreeing a bundle of documents;
- Taking witness statements, drafting statements and agreeing their content with witnesses;
- preparing bundle of documents;
- Reviewing and advising on the other party’s witness statements;
- agreeing a list of issues, a chronology and/or cast list; and
- Instructions to Counsel
The stages set out above are an indication and if some of stages above are not required, the fee will be reduced. You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only have our advice in relation to some of the stages. This can also be arranged based on your individual needs.
Our senior employment law partner, Simon Gilmour, heads up our employment team and has over 25 years’ experience leading some of our most high-profile cases to a successful conclusion. Regardless of which member of our employment law team works on your matter, they will be supervised by Simon.
Our solicitors have experience in all aspects of employment law and we dedicate ourselves to ensuring our knowledge stays up to date, in order to give you the best service possible. They each have more than 12 years of experience in the area. We always make sure that all our solicitors and members of staff are supported and supervised appropriately so that the quality of advice is not affected, regardless of who is working on your case.
How long will my matter take?
The time that it takes from taking your initial instructions to the final resolution of your matter depends largely on the stage at which your case is resolved. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take up to 6 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is currently likely to take 12 months to 3 years (depending on the complexity of the case and which Tribunal it is assigned to). This is just an estimate and we will of course be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.