Thank you for looking at our services for Employment Law. We regularly advise employers of all sizes across a wide range of industries on dealing with employment tribunal claims, early conciliation and other options for resolving employment disputes.
As an employer, you have a duty to comply with all relevant legislation, while still needing to be able to manage your workforce effectively. If an employee has raised an issue or made a claim to an employment tribunal, it is essential to have the right expert advice to protect your business and reputation.
Our expert employment lawyers can guide you through each step of the process of dealing with an employment dispute, removing as much stress and uncertainty from the situation as possible. We can help you secure the best available outcome for your business as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible while minimising any negative impact on your commercial interests.
Our expert team have years of experience handling both straightforward and highly complex employment disputes, from negotiation and early conciliation through to Employment Tribunal hearings and Employment Appeal Tribunals proceedings.
We appreciate that getting the right result is only one of the concerns when dealing with an employment dispute – protecting your reputation and making sure the matter is dealt with efficiently are often just as important. We therefore tailor our approach to your priorities, making sure we resolve your matter in way that works for you and your business.
Value for money and overall costs are important factors for any business, so we will provide you with a range of estimates and keep you updated on costs at all times. That way you can budget appropriately and be confident that we are handling your case cost-effectively.
Whether you wish to settle a claim or fight it at tribunal, we will provide an honest assessment of the situation and commercially-focused advice to make sure you are pursuing the best strategy for your business.
We are proud to hold the Lexcel Accreditation issued by the Law Society. This involves the firm undergoing a rigorous audit process which ensures we maintain the highest levels of client care.
Please note that the majority of employment law disputes that we deal with result in settlement, most commonly before a claim is even issued. However, we are required to provide you with information relating to the cost of bringing or defending certain types of Employment Tribunal claim, and we have done so below.
In most cases, we can help you resolve the issues via a settlement prior to a claim being brought and if so, the costs estimates below do not apply as the legal costs are likely to be much lower. We can provide more information about this when you talk to us.
Our fees for defending claims brought against your business for unfair and wrongful dismissal are based on three bands, which we will be happy to discuss with you.
We will advise you of the funding options available to you, for example, using any commercial legal expenses insurance your business is covered by.
There are various items we will consider when deciding what pricing band your case falls into. Much depends on the complexity of the case, the actual length of the hearing, the number of witnesses on either side and the amount of documentation. In particularly complex cases that involve other issues such as discrimination or whistleblowing, the hearing could be substantially longer. We will make this assessment and inform you of the relevant fees at the earliest opportunity and keep this under review.
Factors that may influence this include the need for:
- Responding to a claim has been made against you
- Reviewing documentation received setting out the factual and legal basis of the claim
- Responding to Orders made by the Tribunal
- Any applications to a Tribunal we need to make on your behalf
- Whether an Employment Tribunal hearing is required
- If it is necessary to make or defend applications to amend claims or to provide or request further information about an existing claim
Cost/Range of Costs
Simple case defined as: 1 day hearing
£3,000 to £7,000 plus VAT
Medium complex case defined as: 2-3 day hearing
£7,000 to £15,000 plus VAT
High complex case defined as: 3-5 day hearing
£15,000 to £30,000 plus VAT
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as barrister’s fees or the charges of expert witnesses. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
Counsel's fees estimated between £750 to £3,000 per day plus VAT (depending on experience of the advocate) for attending a Tribunal Hearing (including preparation).
Exclusions and Factors Which May Make a Case More Complex
In the event that the issues become more complex, we will make sure you are informed of this at the earliest opportunity and a clear estimate of those extra costs will be provided.
Factors that may lead to an increase in cost include:
- If it is necessary to make or defend application about a claim or part of a claim being out of time.
- Complex preliminary issues such as whether the claimant is an employee, whether they are disabled or whether a disclosure meets the legal definition of whistleblowing.
- If the other side is not represented by a lawyer
- The number of documents and the efficiency of the process by which you provide them to us
- If it is necessary to make, consider or defend an application for specific disclosure
- If it is necessary to make or review disclosure in more than one tranche.
- The number of witnesses, the length of time over which alleged mattes took place and the amount of evidence required from witnesses
- Allegations of discrimination or whistleblowing which are linked to the dismissal and/or other types of automatic unfair dismissal claim.
- If we enter into mediation or have extensive correspondence or discussions relating to settlement
- Making or defending a costs application or deposit order application
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 and also how busy any particular employment tribunal is at the time.
If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take 2-6 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is likely to take 6 to 12 months.
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.
There are key milestones, which may vary according to individual circumstances. They may be as follows:
- Taking your initial instructions
- Reviewing the papers and advising you on the merits of the claim being brought against you and likely compensation an Employment Tribunal might award if the claim is successful (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 your response to the claim
- Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process
- 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
- Preparation and attendance at Final Hearing, including instructions to Counsel