Employment Law Fees
Employment Tribunal Claims: Range of Costs
Our typical pricing for bringing and defending claims for unfair or wrongful dismissal are detailed below. These are based on our experience and intended as a guide only. No two claims are the same and we would carry out an assessment specific to your claim at the outset and as the matter progressed to give you a better estimate of the likely costs.
Simple case: £6,000 – £10,000 (excluding VAT at 20%)
Medium complexity case: £10,000 – £15,000 (excluding VAT at 20%)
High complexity case: £15,000 – £25,000 (excluding VAT at 20%)
We charge based on an hourly rate which varies depending on the member of staff dealing with your matter. Our lowest hourly rate is £140 (excluding VAT at 20%) and our highest is £290 (excluding VAT at 20%). The seniority of the members of staff dealing with your case will depend on its complexity. We will discuss this with you when you instruct us.
Factors that could make a case more complex include:
· If it is necessary to make or defend applications to amend claims or to provide further information about an existing claim
· Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person (i.e. where a party does not have legal representation)
· Making or defending a costs application
· Complex preliminary issues such as whether the claimant is disabled (if this is not agreed by the parties)
· The number of witnesses and documents
· If it is an automatic unfair dismissal claim, e.g. if you are dismissed after blowing the whistle on your employer
· If allegations of discrimination are linked to the dismissal
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Counsel’s fees or the costs of a medical expert. We handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf to enable a smoother process.
We estimate Counsel’s fees at between £1,500-£3,000 for preparation of the first day of a Tribunal hearing lasting no more than 3-4 days (including the first day’s attendance) and £800 – £1,750 per day for each subsequent day (excluding VAT at 20%) for attending a Tribunal hearing. Counsel’s fees depend on the experience of the advocate. Generally, we would allow 1 – 4 days for a final hearing depending on the complexity of your case. The fee for the preparation and first day of a hearing will be more in the case of longer hearings.
The above estimates exclude any work done in relation to any appeals after the final Tribunal hearings for which we will provide a budget as appropriate.
The fees set out above cover the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:
· Taking your initial instructions, reviewing the papers and advising you on merits and likely compensation
· Entering into pre-claim conciliation via ACAS to explore whether a settlement can be reached
· Preparing the claim or response
· Reviewing and advising on the claim or response from the other party
· Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process
· Preparing or considering a schedule of loss
· Preparing for (and attending) a Preliminary Hearing
· Dealing with disclosure and exchanging documents with the other party and agreeing a bundle of documents
· Taking witness statements, drafting statement and agreeing their content with witnesses
· Preparing the 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
The stages set out above are an indication and may not all be required in each case. Many cases of this nature settle before a final hearing. We would carry out regular reviews of the merits of the claim and likely compensation, as well as exploring the possibility of settlement as the claim progresses.
Alternative ways of funding your claim
You may feel that you would prefer to handle the claim yourself and only take our advice in relation to some of the stages. This can be arranged to suit your individual needs. You might have access to other funding options, such as legal expenses insurance cover. If you think you may have legal expenses insurance, we recommend that you review any insurance policies you hold or on which you are named and we can discuss this with you further at our first appointment.
Timescales for dealing with your claim
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. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation and before proceedings are issued, your case is likely to take 2-6 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is likely to take in the region of 6-12/18 months. How long it takes for the matter to be listed for a final hearing depends on several factors, including how many days are required for the hearing and judicial availability. These timescales are 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.
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Natalie is an Employment Law specialist with over 10 years’ experience representing both businesses and individuals across a range of employment services including settlement agreements, discrimination, dismissals and redundancy.
Sophie Price is a Trainee Solicitor currently in the Employment Law department and is based in the Lace Market office.
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