Employment Law Solicitor covering Coventry, Warwick and Balsall Comman Specialist in Employment Law in Coventry, Warwick and the West Midlands
Phone 01926 484488
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       Employment Tribunal Claims and compensation

Fees - There are fees payable to commence a claim in the Employment Tribunal. Please call me for more details. In addition, if your case is felt to be weak you may have to pay a deposit to commence it.

Costs - Each partly is responsible for its own costs unless a case is brought without real grounds or pursued without due diligence and in an inappropriate manner

The types of claim you may make are summarised below together with an indication of likely bands of compensation if you are successful. Please contact us if you require more information.


Basic Award -

If you are successful at Tribunal you will receive a basic award calculated on your length of service age and rate of pay. This will be cancelled out if you have already received a redundancy payment. The basic award is a statutory award calculated in accordance with the provisions of section 119 of the ERA 1996 and in a similar way to a redundancy payment. The calculation involves multiplying the relevant factors of length of continuous service, age and a week's pay (as at the effective date of termination (EDT)) as follows:

  • One and a half weeks' pay for each year of employment after age 41.

  • One week's pay for each year of employment between ages 22 and 40.

  • Half a week's pay for each year of employment under the age of 22.

A cap of 20 years is placed on the period of continuous service.  The amount of a week's pay is also capped by a statutory maximum in the same way as applies to the additional award. This means that the maximum possible award is available only to individuals who accrue 20 years' service with an employer from age 41 or older. Each of the four factors (date of termination, age, length of service and pay) will need to be known in order to calculate the appropriate basic award.

Compensatory Award -

An employment tribunal can make a compensatory award in unfair dismissal cases of such amount as the tribunal considers just and equitable in all the circumstances. However, the award is subject to a statutory limit, which is prescribed annually. There is no minimum award.

The statutory limit does not apply where the reason for the dismissal was that the employee:

  • Was carrying out health and safety activities 

  • Had made a protected disclosure 

  • Was selected for redundancy for one of the above reasons

It is the effective date of termination (EDT) of employment which determines the applicable limit: for example, the limit on the compensatory award for an unfair dismissal where the EDT falls between 1 February 2013 and 31 January 2014 inclusive will be £74200 (see table below).

 

 

Maximum

1 February 2013 - 31 January 2014

£74200

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£72300

 

Additional award -

An employment tribunal may order that an additional award be paid in unfair dismissal cases if an employer does not comply with a reinstatement order or re-engagement order. The minimum and maximum amounts which can be ordered are calculated with reference to a week's pay, subject to statutory limits. The minimum order will be the lower of 26 weeks' pay or the amount in the Minimum column in the table below, while the maximum order will be the lower of 52 weeks' pay or the amount in the Maximum column below.

 

 

Minimum

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£11,180

£22,360

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£10,400

£20,800

 

Week's pay -

The statutory limit on a gross week's pay is prescribed annually. There is no minimum amount.

 

 

Maximum

1 February 2013 - 31 January 2014

£450

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£430

 

Breach of contract

Employment tribunals have jurisdiction to hear some claims for breach of contract that either arise or are in existence on the termination of employment. The limit on such claims is £25,000. This is an aggregate upper limit so, if several claims are made relating to the same contract, the total amount recoverable from the employer remains capped at £25,000.

 

Failure to give statement of particulars of employment

Under section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA 1996), employers must provide employees whose employment is to continue for more than one month with a written statement of certain terms of their employment. If there is any change to any of the required statutory particulars of employment, the employer must give the employee a written statement containing details of the change at the earliest opportunity and, in any event, no later than one month after the change. An employee can only claim for a breach of these rights where they also have a successful substantive claim of a type specified in Schedule 5 to the Employment Act 2002 (EA 2002) (which includes, for example, claims for inducements relating to union membership or activities and collective bargaining, unfair dismissal, unlawful deductions from wages and breach of contract). Where one of the claims specified in Schedule 5 is successful, and at the time the claim was brought the employer was in breach of their duties under sections 1 or 4 of the ERA 1996, the tribunal must make an award equivalent to two weeks' pay. Alternatively, if the tribunal considers it is just and equitable to do so, it can make an award equivalent to four weeks' pay. In the case of either award, the amount is subject to the statutory limit on a week's pay.

 

Limit on two weeks' pay

Limit on four weeks' pay

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£860

£1,720

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£800

£1,600

 

Discipline and grievances-

Breach of right to be accompanied

A worker may bring a claim that their employer failed, or threatened to fail, to comply with the worker's right to be accompanied to a disciplinary or grievance hearing. An employment tribunal can award a maximum of two weeks' pay if the claim succeeds subject to the statutory limit on a week's pay. There is no minimum award.

 

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£860

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£800

 

Flexible working-

Breach of flexible working regulations

An employee who has a child under the age of 17, or a disabled child under the age of 18, has the right to request flexible working. Employers must give proper consideration to any such request and must follow a statutory procedure when considering it. An employee whose flexible working request is refused may bring a claim for one of the following:

  • The employer has failed in its procedural obligations.

  • The employer has not given one of the permitted grounds for rejecting the request.

  • The employer's decision was based on incorrect facts.

If the complaint is upheld by an employment tribunal, it may order a reconsideration of the application and award compensation up to a maximum of eight weeks' pay subject to the statutory limit on a week's pay . There is no minimum award.

 

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£3,440

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£3,200

 

 

Insolvency

The National Insurance Fund guarantees a basic minimum payment of specific debts owed to employees by their insolvent employers, provided certain conditions are met. The maximum limits on debts in relation to arrears of pay, statutory notice pay, holiday pay, basic awards and statutory redundancy payments are set out below.

 

Arrears of pay

Employees can claim up to a maximum limit of eight weeks' arrears of pay (up to the current statutory limit on a week's pay , less tax and NICs . Arrears of pay include:

  • Guarantee payments.

  • Payment for time off for carrying out trade union duties.

  • Remuneration on suspension on medical or maternity grounds.

  • Remuneration under a protective award (subject to both the overall limit of eight weeks' pay and the statutory cap on a week's pay).

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£3,440

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£3,200

 

 Statutory notice pay

An employee can recover a debt in relation to statutory notice pay (irrespective of the length of their contractual notice) from the National Insurance Fund. The maximum statutory minimum notice period  is 12 weeks and is subject to the current maximum statutory limit on a week's pay. 

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£5,160

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£4,800

  

Holiday pay

An employee can recover a debt in relation to holiday pay from the National Insurance Fund, subject to a maximum of six weeks' pay. One week's pay is subject to the current maximum statutory limit on a week's pay.

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£2,580

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£2,400

  

Interest-

Unpaid tribunal awards

An employment tribunal has no power to award interest as a remedy in its own right. However, specific provision is made for interest to accrue on any award of compensation which remains unpaid after 42 days from when the tribunal's decision is sent to the parties.

The current rate of interest is that contained in section 17 of the Judgments Act 1838. Since 1 April 1993 this rate has been 8% each year.

 

Discrimination cases - Interest on discrimination awards is set down in the Employment Tribunals (Interest on Awards in Discrimination Cases) Regulations 1996 (SI 1996/2803). These give tribunals the power to award interest on the claimant's losses as part of the compensation for discrimination.

Interest on claimant's losses up to judgment

For injury to feelings awards, interest runs from the date of the discriminatory act to the date of calculation. For other awards, including past financial losses, the interest runs from the "mid-point" date to the date of calculation. The mid-point is calculated as the date halfway between the discriminatory act and ending on the calculation date (usually the judgment date).

Interest accrues from day to day, and is simple rather than compound. Regulation 3(2) provides that the rate payable in England and Wales is that prescribed from time to time for the Special Investment Account under rule 27(1) of the Court Funds Rules 1987 (SI 1987/821).

 

Rate of interest (England and Wales)

From 1 July 2009

0.5%

1 June 2009 - 30 June 2009

1.5%

  

Interest on unpaid tribunal awards - Interest is payable on unpaid awards under the Employment Tribunals (Interest) Order 1990 (SI 1990/479). Interest accrues from the day after the decision day onwards unless the full amount of the award is paid within 14 days after the relevant decision day (regulation 8, Employment Tribunals (Interest on Awards in Discrimination Cases) Regulations 1996). Interest will be calculated in accordance with the rate prescribed by section 17 of the Judgments Act 1838, which is currently 8% each year.

Maternity, paternity and adoption

Statutory maternity pay

Statutory maternity pay(SMP) is payable at two different rates:

 

 

SMP: earnings-related rate

Maximum period

From 1 April 2012

90% of employee's weekly earnings

Six weeks

3 April 2011 - 31 March 2012

90% of employee's weekly earnings

Six weeks

 

 

SMP: prescribed rate (each week)

Maximum period

From 1 April 2012

£135.45

33 weeks

3 April 2011 - 31 March 2012

£128.73

33 weeks

 

Statutory paternity pay

Statutory paternity pay  (SPP) is payable for up to two weeks at the prescribed rate (see table below), or at the earnings-related rate (90% of the employee's normal weekly earnings), whichever is lower. The prescribed rate of SPP is contained in regulation 2 of the Statutory Paternity Pay and Statutory Adoption Pay (Weekly Rates) Regulations 2002 (SI 2002/2818) and is revised annually. The current rate was prescribed by the Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2012 (SI 2012/780).

 

 

SPP: prescribed rate (each week)

Maximum period

From 1 April 2012

£135.45

Two weeks ordinary paternity leave; 26 weeks additional paternity leave

3 April 2011 - 31 March 2012

£128.73

Two weeks ordinary paternity leave; 26 weeks additional paternity leave

 

Statutory adoption pay

Statutory adoption pay - (SAP) is payable for up to 39 weeks at the prescribed rate (see table below), or at the earnings-related rate (90% of the employee's normal weekly earnings), whichever is lower. Unlike SMP  SAP is paid at the same rate for the full period. The prescribed rate of SAP is contained in regulation 3 of the Statutory Paternity Pay and Statutory Adoption Pay (Weekly Rates) Regulations 2002 (SI 2002/2818) and is revised annually. The current rate was prescribed by the Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2012 (SI 2012/780).

 

 

SAP: prescribed rate (each week)

Maximum period

From 1 April 2012

£135.45

39 weeks

3 April 2011 - 31 March 2012

£128.73

39 weeks

  

Maternity allowance

Maternity allowance  is payable for up to 39 weeks to women who are not entitled to SMP because they are either low-paid or self-employed. The individual is entitled to the lower of the prescribed rate of maternity allowance (see table below) or 90% of their normal weekly earnings. The prescribed weekly rate of maternity allowance is contained in section 35A of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992 and is revised annually. The current rate was prescribed by the Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2012 (SI 2012/780).

 

Maternity allowance (each week)

Maximum period

From 9 April 2012

£135.45

39 weeks

11 April 2011 - 8 April 2012

£128.73

39 weeks

 

Small employers' relief - Employers with Class 1 NIC  liability below a specified threshold for the tax year qualify for small employers' relief. They are entitled to recover 100% of their SMP, SPP  and SAP, plus an additional compensatory amount, which relates to NICs payable on that SMP, SPP or SAP.

 

 

Annual threshold

Percentage rate of compensatory amount

From 6 April 2011

£45,000

3%

6 April 2004 - 5 April 2011

£45,000

4.5%

 

National minimum wage

There are different rates of national minimum wage (NMW) for four categories of worker:

  • Standard adult rate. This rate applies to workers aged 21 or over (there is no upper age limit) (National Minimum Wage Act 1998). Before 1 October 2010, this rate only applied to workers aged 22 or over.

  • Development rate. This rate applies to workers aged between 18 and 20 inclusive (regulation 13(1), National Minimum Wage Regulations 1999 (SI 1999/584) (NMWR 1999)). Before 1 October 2010, this rate also applied to workers aged 21 and before 1 October 2006 it also applied to certain workers aged 22 or over.

  • Young workers rate. This rate applies to workers aged under 18 but above the compulsory school age who are not apprentices (regulation 13(2), NMWR 1999).

  • Apprenticeship rate. This rate was introduced in October 2010 and applies to apprentices under 19 years of age or those aged 19 and over but in the first year of their apprenticeship (regulation 13(3), NMWR 1999).

If an employer provides a worker with free accommodation, some of its value can be counted towards NMW pay. This is the "accommodation offset". An employer cannot offset more than the accommodation offset limit.

These figures are reviewed each year, following recommendations by the Low Pay Commission. The current figures were prescribed by the National Minimum Wage (Amendment) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012/2397).

 

 

Standard adult rate (minimum hourly rate)

Development rate (minimum hourly rate)

Young workers rate (minimum hourly rate)

Apprenticeship rate (minimum hourly rate)

Accommodation offset limit (maximum daily deduction from NMW)

1 October 2012 - 30 September 2013

£6.19

£4.98

£3.68

£2.65

£4.82

1 October 2011 - 30 September 2012

£6.08

£4.98

£3.68

£2.60

£4.73

 

Pensions -

Annual allowance

The annual allowance is the maximum amount of contributions a member may make to any registered pension scheme, or the increase in the value of a member's benefits, in a given year. A tax charge will arise on additional contributions or benefits to the extent they exceed the annual allowance.

Tax year

Annual allowance

2012-13

£50,000

2011-12

£50,000

 

 

Lifetime allowance

The standard lifetime allowance is the total amount of pension savings within a registered pension scheme that receive favourable tax treatment. Funds over the lifetime allowance may be held within a registered scheme, but tax charges will arise on the excess.

Tax year

Lifetime allowance

2012-13

£1,500,000

2011-12

£1,800,000

 

Redundancy -

Statutory redundancy payment

Employees who are made redundant and have two years' continuous employment are entitled to a statutory redundancy payment. The amount of the payment is calculated in the same way as the basic award for unfair dismissal, according to a formula based on the employee's age, length of service and week's pay. There is no minimum payment. 

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£12,900

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£12,000

 

 Guarantee payment

During periods of lay-off or short-time working an employee may be entitled to a statutory guarantee payment, which is calculated by multiplying the number of normal working hours on the workless day by the guaranteed hourly rate. 

Statutory guarantee payments are subject to a maximum daily limit which is prescribed annually. There is no minimum payment. The current limit was prescribed by the Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2011 (SI 2011/3006).

 

Maximum

1 February 2012 - 31 January 2013

£23.50 a day (subject to a maximum of five days or £117.50 in any three months)

1 February 2011 - 31 January 2012

£22.20 a day (subject to a maximum of five days or £111 in any three months)

 

 

Failure to inform or consult over collective redundancy

The maximum protective award which can be awarded for a failure to inform or consult over a collective redundancy is 90 days' gross pay per dismissed employee. The statutory limit on a week's pay does not apply and there is no minimum award.

 

Sickness -

Statutory sick pay

The statutory sick pay  (SSP) scheme, set out in Part XI of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, entitles qualifying employees who have been absent from work for four or more consecutive days to receive a minimum weekly payment. Employees are entitled to up to 28 weeks' SSP in any period of incapacity for work.

The rate of SSP is contained in section 157 of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992. The current rate was prescribed by the Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2012 (SI 2012/780).

 

Sick days between

SSP rate (each week)

6 April 2012 - 5 April 2013

£85.85

6 April 2011 - 5 April 2012

£81.60

 

Tax and NICs -

Income tax: personal allowances

Not all income is taxable and an individual is only taxed on "taxable income" to the extent it exceeds the individual's income tax personal allowance for the tax year. There are other reliefs and allowances that can apply to reduce the amount of income tax payable.

Tax year

Personal allowance for people aged under 65

Personal allowance for people aged 65-74

Personal allowance for people aged 75 and over

Income limit for age-related allowances

Married couple's allowance for people born before 6 April 1935 (maximum)

Married couple's allowance for people born before 6 April 1935 (minimum)

Blind person's allowance

2012-13

£8,105

£10,500

£10,660

£25,400

£7,705

£2,960

£2,100

2011-12

£7,475

£9,940

£10,090

£24,000

£7,295

£2,800

£1,980

 

 

Income tax: taxable bands

The taxable bands apply after any personal allowances.

Tax year

Starting rate (10%)

Basic rate (20%)

Higher rate (40%)

Additional rate (50%)

2012-13

N/A

£0-£34,370

£34,371-£150,000

Over £150,000

2011-12

N/A

£0-£35,000

£35,001-£150,000

Over £150,000

 

 

National Insurance contributions

NICs  are payable to HMRC by employees, their employers, and by self-employed workers. The amount of NIC payable is determined by multiplying the earnings or profits (plus certain non-cash benefits) of the employee or self-employed person by the relevant percentage or fixed rate. The rate will depend on the "class" (for NIC purposes) of the person and the level of earnings or profits. NIC is typically not payable below a prescribed earnings or profits lower limit, and is payable at a reduced rate, beyond a prescribed earnings or profits upper limit.

Tax year

Lower earnings limit(each week)

Primary threshold  (each week)

Secondary threshold (each week)

Upper earnings limit  (each week)

Upper accrual point (each week)

Employees' rate (primary class 1 contributions) (each week)

Employers' rate (secondary class 1 contributions) above secondary threshold (each week)

2012-13

£107

£146

£144

£817

£770

12% of earnings between £146 and £817

2% of earnings above £817

13.8%

2011-12

£102

£139

£136

£817

£770

12% of earnings between £139 and £817

2% of earnings above £817

13.8%

 

 Trade unions

Refusal of employment on union membership grounds

It is unlawful to refuse to employ a person because they are a member (or are not a member) of a trade union, or because they refuse to join or leave a trade union. It is also unlawful for an agency to refuse employment services on those grounds. An employment tribunal can award compensation "on the same basis as damages for breach of statutory duty", and this may include compensation for injury to feelings, as well as financial loss, Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 (TULRCA)). There is an upper limit equal to that of the compensatory award in unfair dismissal cases. There is no minimum award.

 

 

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