Number of employees taking claims to employment tribunals doubles

By Gary Adair

New quarterly statistics published by the Ministry of Justice have revealed that the number of claims to Employment Tribunals in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK has more than doubled in the last two years.

The statistics show that the Ministry of Justice received a total of 4,291 single claims during the reporting period of January to March 2017, a figure which saw a considerable increase to 9,500 for the same period this year.

Analysts are attributing this substantial increase in single claims to the decision made by the Supreme Court to declare Employment Tribunal fees unlawful in July 2017.

The year on year increase in single claims was relatively small in comparison, with statistics showing an increase of just 6% in single claims against this time last year. The extent of the backlog is very apparent, though, with number of outstanding cases seeing an increase of 39% to 26,664.The average time taken to complete also increased, from 27 weeks to 33 weeks.

These figures do a lot to illustrate that employees are now increasingly willing to open Employment Tribunal proceedings against their employers, and especially so in cases of discrimination, workplace sexual harassment, unfair dismissal, and unlawful dismissal claims.

It is a difficult decision to take when considering a claim against your employer for unfair dismissal, discrimination or harassment, but genuine claims can help create a better workplace for fellow employees and stamp out poor and unfair working practice.

If you require legal advice in respect of an employment tribunal claim from an employment law solicitor in Northern Ireland contact Wilson Nesbitt in Bangor or Belfast by following this link