The House of Commons Select Committee has published its second report into Tribunal fees. The full report can be found here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmjust/167/16702.htm
Terms of reference
In relation to court and tribunal fees, the l terms of reference of the inquiry asked:
- How have the increased court fees and the introduction of employment tribunal fees affected access to justice? How have they affected the volume and quality of cases brought?
- How has the court fees regime affected the competitiveness of the legal services market in England and Wales, particularly in an international context?
- How will the increases to courts and tribunals fees announced in Cm. 9123, “Court and Tribunal Fees”, published on 22 July 2015, and the further proposals for introducing or increasing fees included for consultation in Cm. 9123, affect access to justice?
The Committee Recommended:
That the Government publish forthwith the factual information which they have collated as part of their post-implementation review of employment tribunal fees.
- the overall quantum of fees charged for bringing cases to employment tribunals should be substantially reduced;
- the binary Type A/type B distinction should be replaced: acceptable alternatives could be by a single fee; by a three-tier fee structure, as suggested by the Senior President of Tribunals; or by a level of fee set as a proportion of the amount claimed, with the fee waived if the amount claimed is below a determined level;
- disposable capital and monthly income thresholds for fee remission should be increased, and no more than one fee remission application should be required, covering both the issue fee and the prospective hearing fee and with the threshold for exemption calculated on the assumption that both fees will be paid;
- further special consideration should be given to the position of women alleging maternity or pregnancy discrimination, for whom, at the least, the time limit of three months for bringing a claim should be reviewed.
For employment law advice, please contact Philip Henson – Partner and Head of Employment Law at DKLM LLP. http://www.dklm.co.uk/site/people/profile/p.henson