by Tim Lezard A new judicial review launched by UNISON over the introduction of Tribunal fees is today being heard in the High Court. It follows the decision of the Court of Appeal last month to stay the appeal of the earlier High Court decision over t …

Tim Lezard Europe, UK, UK unions, Unison,

High Courtby Tim Lezard

A new judicial review launched by UNISON over the introduction of Tribunal fees is today being heard in the High Court.

It follows the decision of the Court of Appeal last month to stay the appeal of the earlier High Court decision over tribunal fees, in light of new evidence showing a huge drop in tribunal claims.

The Lord Chancellor agreed with UNISON that a new hearing should take place as soon as possible in light of the new evidence.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:  “The High Court’s decision to schedule the judicial review within a month of the union filing its claim shows just how important the issue of tribunal fees is.

“Over the past year we have seen tens of thousands of workers denied access to justice simply because they can no longer afford to bring an employment tribunal claim. If the government doesn’t abolish these unfair fees it is effectively rolling out the welcome mat to unscrupulous employers, and we must do everything possible not to let that happen.”

Ministry of Justice statistics show a dramatic fall in clams being brought to Employment Tribunals and to the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Prior to the introduction of fees, the Employment Tribunals received on average 48,000 new claims per quarter. The most recent quarterly figures, for April to June 2014 show that in that quarter there were only 8,540 new claims – 81% fewer than the number of claims lodged in the same period of 2013, according to MoJ figures released last month.

Since the introduction of fees on 29 July 2013, there has been an 86% drop in sex discrimination claims; and an 80% drop in equal pay claims.


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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