Tribunal cases surge
The number of employment cases has rocketed by 39% since tribunal fees were scrapped last year.
The government’s Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) reports that claims made to them as the first step to an employment tribunal have increased from 1700 to 2200 a week since last July.
Its annual report for the year to April 2018 revealed that it handled 26,012 cases that were referred to the employment tribunal, compared with 18,647 claims in 2016/17.
In July 2017, the Supreme Court abolished fees of up to £1,200 for an individual to take a case to the employment tribunal.
Acas chair, Sir Brendan Barber, said: “The number of people deciding to pursue a tribunal claim has definitely increased since the Supreme Court decision to scrap fees.
“Our annual report shows that demand for our early conciliation service increased by nearly 20 per cent and there’s been an almost 40 per cent jump in Acas cases that involve tribunal claims compared to the same period the previous year.”
The government introduced fees in July 2013 to ostensibly reduce costs and vexatious cases. In the year to June 2013, there was an average of 13,500 cases lodged by individuals every three months.
The fees led to the decrease of cases by 67% and a decrease of cases brought jointly by two or more individuals by 73%.
The Acas report also revealed that they sought to resolve 715 disputes between groups of workers and their employers in 2017/18. Pay and employment were the main causes of disputes.