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Access to employment rights in jeopardy

The introduction of employment tribunal fees will stop lower wage workers from accessing their rights and will create an environment on the side of employers, says Donna Martin

18 October 2012

Summer 2013 will see the start of a new stage in employment law with the introduction of fees in employment tribunals. Since the tribunal service was first introduced in 1964, the cost of bringing a claim has always been free. It is thought that by introducing fees, those who wish to bring a claim can bear the burden of the £84m cost of running the employment tribunal system currently shouldered by the taxpayer.

From next summer, if a claimant wishes to take a claim to tribunal they will have to pay both an issue fee and a hearing fee. To bring an unfair dismissal claim or discrimination claim it will cost in the region of £1,200; £250 to issue the claim and £950 to get a hearing date.
A more straight forward claim, such as a claim for unlawful deduction from wages, holiday payments and redundancy payments, could total £390; £160 to issue and £230 for the hearing. Where more than one claim is brought, which is...

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