Details of the services we provide in relation to unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal Employment Tribunal claims
We advise both businesses and individuals in relation to bringing and defending Tribunal claims for wrongful and unfair dismissal.
When we provide you with a fee proposal for Tribunal work we will provide a clear breakdown of the aspects upon which we are advising and those which are excluded from our scope. Each matter is different and so it is not possible to state the particular aspects relevant to your case without further information. Once we have a better understanding of the facts we can confirm the aspects upon which we will be providing input.
Where we have provided an overview of our fees below, this is based on a “typical” Employment Tribunal claim for wrongful and/or unfair dismissal in so far as this is possible and so we have assumed that our services would include the following key stages:
- Taking initial instructions and assessing the prospects of successfully bringing or defending the claim(s)
- Reviewing documents which are relevant to the issues in dispute (e.g. contract, emails and correspondence)
- Preparing the pleadings in the case (e.g. your claim form if you are bringing the claim (also referred to as the Grounds of Complaint and ET1 form) or your defence if you are defending the claim (also referred to as the Grounds of Resistance and Form ET3)
- Complying with Orders from the Tribunal including regarding the disclosure and exchange of documents and provision of a Schedule of Loss
- Preparing and exchanging Witness Statements
- Preparing for Hearings
- Instructing Counsel (a barrister) if appropriate to appear at Hearing – this will almost always be the case for the full hearing of the claim
- Liaising by email, meetings or phone calls
There is no “standard” time frame for an Employment Tribunal claim, every claim has its own characteristics which will impact upon timings, plus there are the added dynamics of the current pressure on the Employment Tribunal system and impact of COVID-19, which, in some cases, can lead to a delay of many months in cases proceeding to Hearing(s).
The time taken depends on a number of factors, including the issues in dispute and their complexity, the number of hearings required and their duration and the number of parties to the claim.
Please note that the fees mentioned below do not include any additional expenses, such as Counsel's fees. Please see below for a description of the possible disbursements in relation to Tribunal claims.
Overview of fees
No one Tribunal claim is exactly the same as another – the process will depend upon a number of factors set out in the section above. In light of this, we cannot provide a reliable estimate of the cost of us helping you until we have details of your circumstances.
The vast majority of Employment Tribunal claims settle prior to a full merits hearing. However our total fees in the event that the claim proceeds to full hearing typically start from around £35,000 plus VAT and any additional expenses (such as Counsel's fees) for a straight forward claim. Complex or protracted claims involving additional heads of claims such as whistleblowing or discrimination can incur fees of over £100,000 plus VAT and any additional expenses.
These fee parameters do not include settlement negotiations (including mediations) or our attendance at Hearings.
Whatever the nature of the Tribunal claim there are certain complicating factors that are likely to increase costs. These include the issues in dispute and their complexity, the volume of documentation, the number of hearings required and their duration, the number of parties to the claim, the approach of the opposing party to the litigation (and whether they are legally represented) and each party’s approach to settlement
At the start of any matter we will assess the merits of your claim / defence and the likely work required in relation to it. As the case develops we will inform you of any complications and the consequences on the fees of the matter.
Our fee proposals are based upon the estimated hours it is likely to take to provide the advice or complete the application. Our hourly rates vary according to the nature of a particular engagement and the seniority of the lawyers. In considering pricing we take into account many factors such as your objectives and the complexity, novelty, urgency, value and risk of a project. Our hourly rates are as follows (these are reviewed in May each year):
Rates (exclusive of VAT)
Rates (inclusive of VAT at 20%)
£465 to £685
£558 to £822
£390 to £550
£468 to £660
£310 to £515
£372 to £618
£325 to £395
£282 to £474
Paralegals, Assistant Solicitors and Trainee Solicitors:
£165 to £250
£198 to £300
Where appropriate, we may offer a fixed fee option. Where fixed fees are offered, the scope of the work to be carried out will be clearly set out and will be easy to compare against the time spent option for the same aspect.
When providing fee proposals, our fees are stated to be exclusive of VAT and so VAT (where applicable, currently at 20%) will be due in addition. For clarity the table above shows our rates without VAT and with VAT.
During the course of the matter, in addition to our fees, certain other expenses (known as “disbursements”) are likely to become payable. In some cases we may handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf to make things simpler for you. In some cases we will request payment for anticipated disbursements on account.
Examples of likely disbursements in relation to a typical Employment Tribunal matter are set out below.
- Counsel’s Fees (the cost of engaging a barrister to undertake the advocacy at Tribunal or advise on the case more generally) and their disbursements, such as travel costs;
- Expert Witness Fees;
- Courier Fees;
- Travel and Accommodation expenses to attend Employment Tribunal Hearings.
Qualification and experience
Our team has extensive experience of Employment Tribunal claims. All members of our employment team have experience are specialist lawyers in this area and work is always supervised by one of the partners or managing associates – please click the link to the right or below (on mobile) for details of the team member who may work on your matter. From time to time members of the team may be assisted by a trainee or paralegal – details of the particular members of the team dealing with your matter will be provided to you as and when you choose to instruct us.
This page was last amended on 22 May 2023.