The Government announced on Friday 20 October 2017 that it is now in the first phases of arranging for the repayment of employment tribunal fees.
For individual employee claimants, trade unions and respondent employers who have been ordered to pay employment tribunal fees since they were first implemented on 29 July 2013, the process is now open to reclaim the fees that have been paid.
The Government will also be paying interest at 0.5% from the date of original payment up to the date of the refund.
At present, it has been estimated that the repayment of the fees plus interest is likely to cost in the region of £33 million, although it has also been noted that there are no centrally maintained records of the fees that have been paid.
Although the announcement has made it clear that those who have paid fees will be contacted about their refund, there is only a short opening period to claim a repayment of fees.
Further details of reclaiming employment tribunal fees paid after 29 July 2013 can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/opening-stage-of-employment-tribunal-fee-refund-scheme-launched.
In respect of future claims, readers should note that the thrust of the Supreme Court decision that has led to this repayment of fees was not that employment tribunal fees in principle are unlawful; the decision was that the level at which the Government had set those fees was unlawful.
We may therefore be hearing more about the reintroduction of employment tribunal fees at some stage in the future.
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