The purpose of the employment tribunal is for it to make decisions about employment disputes. Pursuant to employment law/regulations, employees have various employment rights which are protected. As an employer if you breach these rights, an employee could take you to employment tribunal to seek remedy/compensation. You can be taken to an employment tribunal for a number of issues such as discrimination, unfair dismissal or an issue relating to wages or redundancy payments. However please note that there are many other types of employment claims which can be brought by an employee.
The employee or job applicant, who can take you to employment tribunal, will not have to pay a fee. This was confirmed in July 2017, when the Supreme Court deemed the fees unlawful. A Trade Union may also make a claim against you.
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Going to tribunal can be a stressful experience and so it is important to solve any problems before it gets to this stage. If however, someone does wish to make a claim against you, you will be contacted by the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS). ACAS will offer to try and resolve the issues with you and the other party which is known as early conciliation.
With a risk of legal action being commenced by an employee it is important for you to seek advice as soon as possible. This is because the process a company undertakes to deal with a grievance/dismissal could adversely affect you, if the procedure undertaken is not in accordance with employment regulations and /or the ACAS code of practice.
The tribunal will send you a response pack.
Some of the claims can be technically complex in nature. You will need to prepare carefully appropriate documents as your evidence and call witnesses to attend the hearing. Preparation is key to winning a case.
Employment tribunal offices are in many parts of the UK and you will be called to the closest one to where you work.
A decision will be made after the tribunal has heard from both parties; you are the ‘respondent’ and the other party is the ‘claimant’. Once a decision has been reached, if you lose you may have to pay compensation to the claimant, which can run into thousands of pounds, or reinstate them back into the workplace.
If you have concerns regarding employment tribunals please contact one of our HR experts today.