Supreme Court ruling on ‘unlawful’ employment tribunal fees welcomed

Justice at work scales

Members seeking justice at work will benefit after a landmark UK court ruling against employment tribunal (ET) fees, Nautilus says.

As a result of trade union Unison’s successful legal challenge, anyone who has been treated illegally or unfairly at work will no longer have to pay to take their employers to court. The government will also have to refund more than £27m to the thousands of people charged for taking claims to tribunals since July 2013, when fees were introduced.

Nautilus director of legal services Charles Boyles said: ‘We have welcomed the ruling of the Supreme Court to the effect that the employment tribunal fees were unlawful from their inception.  These fees meant that sums up to £1,200 had to be paid by workers to take unfair dismissal and discrimination claims to the ET.’

When the fees were introduced, Nautilus adopted a policy of paying them on behalf of members who had meritorious claims.

Even though the fees have been abolished, Mr Boyle said it is still vitally important for workers to be members of a union. Many of them will cover the costs of lawyers’ fees for ET claims – which employees still have to pay even if they win their case.

Nautilus will continue to support and pay the legal fees for members’ claims which have at least a 51% prospect of success, so when members win compensation they do not have to worry about legal costs, Mr Boyle added.

Thursday, August 10, 2017