top-rated free essay

Tribunals and Court System

By magda1983 Apr 21, 2015 1242 Words

The purpose of employment law and how it is enforced. Role played by the tribunal and courts system in enforcing employment law. How the cases are settled before and during formal legal procedures.

Purpose of the Employment Law
The purpose of employment law is to provide legal protection to employees and employers, and to promote a productive, safe workplace. The aim is to promote consistency, fairness and justice for the employees.

Before the Employment law was introduced, workplaces were regulated only by the ethics of the top management and bargaining power of the employee.
There are 3 sources of UK employment law:
1) Common Law (Civil/Case Law) - Since all the UK employees work under the contract of employment, the common law creates the legal basis for the employee/employer relationship. It is the oldest source of law, common to all. It could be also called case law as it comes from an individual court case as result of one party suing another. 2) Statute Law - There has been quite extensive growth of the employment protection legislation since early 1970's which supplemented the common law rules. For example - Equal Pay Act 1970, Sex Discrimination Act 1975, Data Protection Act 1998, Employment Act 2002, etc. 3) European Law - This is law made by the European Union. The UK joined the EU on 1st January 1978. The European Law takes precedence over UK statute law. Enforcement of the Employment Law

Pre Tribunal Hearings
ACAS has always played an important role in employment tribunal proceedings, and from April 2014 this role became even more significant. All the claims has be lodged with ACAS first, before taking it to the Employment Tribunals, under the early conciliation service. Conciliation will be offered here, if unsuccessful the claimant can proceed to lodge the tribunal claim.

Employment Tribunals
Employment tribunals deal with lots of claims from employees relating to their employment or its termination. The majority of the statutory right can only be enforced by employment tribunals (unfair dismissal, unlawful discrimination, equal pay, national minimum wage, working time regulations, deductions from wages, etc.).

It wasn't surprising that the amount of claims grow quite significantly between 2009 and 2013 in comparison to 1990's as employees have gained lots of new legal rights. After July 2013, when the employment tribunal fees were introduced, the number of claims dropped down by 70-80%.

Depending on the type of claim, the employment tribunal can consist of a panel of 3 – an employment judge and 2 lay members - each qualified person, one from an employer background, one from an employee background; or as of April 2012 more commonly only an employment judge sitting alone.

There are set time limits for a submission of the claim - 3 months from the termination of the employment or complaint risen. Some of the claims has 6 month limit - for example redundancy pay.
All accepted claims are brought to the tribunal in a form of a formal hearing.
There are 2 main type of the hearings:
1) Preliminary hearing - short hearing where any issues are raised and discussed, so the main hearing can go smoothly. 2) Full hearing
Tribunal fees
From Monday 29th July 2013, any claims made to Employment tribunal are subject to a fee or an application for a free remission.
The table below (Table 1) shows the type of claim and the fees applicable:

Table 1
Type of claim
Issue Fee
Hearing Fee

- unpaid wages
- redundancy   payments
- unpaid holiday
- unlawful   deductions



- unfair dismissal
- discrimination   complaints
- equal pay claims



Employment Appeals Tribunal
The losing party has 42 days to appeal the decision. For lodging an appeal the issue fee is £400.00 and the hearing fee £1200.00 for both types of claims.
The role of Employment Appeals Tribunals (EAT) is very important as the judgements set out how the law should be applied in the future by all Employment Tribunals. Since April 2013 the judge usually sits alone.

There are 4 possible outcomes when the appeal is made:
1) the appeal may be dismissed
2) the appeal may be allowed
3) the appeal may be allowed and remitted back to the original employment tribunal panel for a final decision 4) the appeal may be allowed and remitted to a different employment tribunal panel to rehear the evidence and make a final decision.

Employment Appeal Tribunal verdict can be appealed to Court of Appeal. These cases are heard in London by panels of three Lords Justices of Appeal.
A further appeal to the Supreme Court can only be made if the point of law that has 'general public importance' is disputed. The Supreme Court has a final say in any matter which concerns UK law.

Any other appeals can be made to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) but only if the case relates to application or interpretation of European law. The ECJ only ever rule in correct interpretation of EU law, sits in Luxemburg and the panel consists of 28 judges, representing each state of EU.

High Court / County Court
When the claim relates to the common law - breach of contract, negligence or personal injury claims (either physical or mental) - it will be heard either in the county court or in the High Court.

The High Court will only hear the cases where more than £15000.00 in damages is wanted, or £50000.00 compensation in the case of personal injuries.
The cases are usually heard by a single judge. The claimants must either represent themselves or be represented by a lawyer.
Appeals from county courts or the High Court go directly to Court of Appeal. Settlement of claims
The disputes can be settled before going through the full hearing by:
- attempting to resolve the issues directly between parties involved
- using the conciliation service offering by ACAS
- using the private mediator or arbitrator
Early conciliation provided by ACAS offers help to resolve the dispute before going to the court. One month is allowed for the process plus additional two weeks in some cases. If no agreement is reached, ACAS must issue the early certificate. Employees will not be able to lodge the claim to the tribunal without this certificate.

ACAS can also assist with post claim conciliation. Once the claim is submitted the conciliation officers will try to promote a settlement if they consider there is a possibility of negotiating a settlement.

Arbitration involves an impartial person who is asked to make a decision on a dispute based on the evidence presented. It is a voluntary service so both parties must agree to go to the arbitration.

Word Count: 1083

ACAS, (2014) Early Conciliation [Online]. London: ACAS
Available at: [Accessed 16th December 2014].
ACAS, (n.d) Employment Tribunals [Online]. London: ACAS
Available at: [Accessed 13th December 2014].
CIPD, (2014) Employment Law: the court system [online]. Factsheet. London: CIPD Available at: [Accessed 6 December 2014].

CIPD, (2014) Employment Tribunals [Online]. Factsheet. London: CIPD Available at: [Accessed 13th December 2014].

CIPD, (2014) TS10: What is the role of an Acas representative in employment tribunal proceedings? [online]. Available at: [Accessed 16th December 2014].

Russell, T., (n.d) A Guide to UK Employment Law [online].
Available at: [Accessed 13th December 2014].

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • Reforms to the Employment Tribunal System

    ...rELATIONS | Reforms to the Employment Tribunal System | | | Reuben Guma | | 1. Introduction Employment relations are riddled with disputes that stem from breaches of trust between employer and employee. Consequently, there is a growing need to address them, and for most employment disputes, the process starts in Employment Tri...

    Read More
  • The American Criminal Court System

    ... The American Criminal Court System Sami-Marcia Donovan CJA/224 June 7, 2014 Gwendolyn Burrell Abstract Some say that crime is increasing, while others argue that crime is decreasing, in any event, it is not stopping and the Criminal Court System plays a crucial part in ensuring the safety of the American people and the communities the...

    Read More
  • Court System

    ...A court system is created to determine the innocent and the guilty when a conflict arises. In many cases it is convicting a criminal for a crime that has been committed. The system entitles everyone to a fair trial no matter what the case and in each trial it is the team that is prosecuting that most prove that if the accused is guilty. Not the ...

    Read More
  • Court System

    ...The basic role of the Canadian court system is to deliver justice between two individuals or two individuals and the state. There are four levels of court in Canada. Provincial courts are the lowest in terms of power. They handle most of the day to day cases. The next court in terms of power is the provincial and territorial superior courts. T...

    Read More
  • court system

    ... Abstract The court system in the United States serves as a tool to ensure that the society keep certain order and respect the law created by the Legislative and Executive power. The court system will ensure that crimes receive the deserve sanction applying the law (severe or not that severe, depending on the type of the crime) (Sieg...

    Read More
  • Court Systems

    ...October 29, 2012 | The U.S. Constitution is supported by a dual court system in which the power is shared between the state and the federal governments. Most criminal cases are tried in state court, whereas, federal crimes are tried in federal courts. Both courts have jurisdiction, although federal courts are limited to the cases heard. The ...

    Read More
  • Court Systems

    ...Court System Shukeyla Jones CJA/204 November 01, 2010 Maxine Craig Court System The modern dual system of courts incorporates both federal and state or local courts. This system is the product of many years of gradual development. Outside this formally established structure, however, personal relationships between key court participants...

    Read More
  • Court Systems

    ...Court System Paper Ronnie Allen Survey of Justice and Security/AJS/502 Version 1 June 10, 2013 Mr. Joseph Laronge This paper is about a court case, different types of federal and state courts, and new technology used in court cases. In everyday life all over the world there are law enforcement officers, lawyer...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.