If you instruct us, we’ll give you a detailed, bespoke fee quote. Below is an estimate of what our fees could be (via the hourly rates of the lawyers involved, and exclusive of VAT, which we’ll charge on top, at 20%).
Simple case: £8,000-£10,000 plus VAT
Medium complexity case: £10,000-£12,000 plus VAT
High complexity case: £12,000-£15,000 plus VAT
Factors that could make a case more complex:
- Claims that aren’t for ordinary unfair/ wrongful dismissal, like if you’re bringing a claim because you’ve been dismissed after blowing the whistle on your employer
- Complex factual backgrounds
- Claims against more than one potential employer
- Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person
- Applications to amend claims or provide further information
- Complex issues at the start of the claim, like who’s the correct employer or whether the claim was submitted in time
- Costs applications
- The number of documents relevant to the issues in dispute
- The number of witnesses needed
- Discrimination allegations linked to the dismissal.
Our fees may increase or decrease as your case progresses. If there are unforeseen complexities which mean we need to do additional work, for example, our fees are likely to increase. We’ll discuss any fee increase with you in advance, providing you with a new estimate.
You may have other funding options. If you have legal expenses insurance with a home or car insurance policy, for example, your insurers may agree to fund all or part of your legal fees. We can discuss the full range of options when we take your initial instructions.
We don’t offer a ‘no-win, no-fee’ service.
As well as our fees, you may also need to pay additional costs called disbursements, which will be subject to VAT at 20% where applicable. Disbursements are costs related to your claim or defence that are payable to third parties, like the fees a barrister would charge for representing you at a hearing, or travel expenses where we need to travel a long distance to the final hearing. We’ll handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process, but we’ll need to give you a separate quote for these costs.
Barrister’s fees for representing you at a hearing for an unfair or wrongful dismissal claims are usually £1000-£2000 for the first day of the hearing and £650-£1100 for each day after that. This includes the barrister’s time in preparing for the hearing, and their fee will depend on how senior they are.
We will speak to you before we incur any disbursements and agree the cost with you in advance. We will give a precise quote of disbursements as and when we receive them.
Our fee bandings include the work we’ll carry out for the following key stages of your claim or defence:
- Discussing the claim or defence with you:
- reviewing the documents
- advising you on pros and cons
- providing an estimate of what compensation you could be awarded if you won or what you could pay if you lost
- We’ll revisit this throughout the case, and our opinion could change if new facts come to light.
- Discussing ‘pre-claim conciliation’ with ACAS. For most claims, you must contact ACAS – the independent advisory service – before the claim is submitted. A conciliator will speak to you and the other party to see if the case can be settled before tribunal.
- Preparing and submitting the claim or response.
- Reviewing the claim or response from other party and confirming whether it changes our assessment of the case and / or its value.
- Exploring and negotiating settlement, either via ACAS or direct with the other party or their representative. This usually takes place throughout the case.
- Preparing or considering a ‘schedule of loss’. This is a document that sets out how much compensation (such as loss of earnings) is being claimed.
- Preparing for and attending any preliminary hearings. These are mini hearings before an employment tribunal judge that deal with specific issues (like who is the correct employer and whether the claim been brought in time) before the final hearing.
- Preparing a list of all of the documents that are relevant to your claim or defence.
- Exchanging the list and the documents with the other party.
- Reviewing the other party’s documents and confirming whether they change our assessment of the claim and / or its value.
- Agreeing a bundle of documents for both parties to refer to at the final hearing.
- Preparing your witness statements. This involves speaking to your witnesses to get their version of the facts of the claim or defence, putting the information into a comprehensive statement (with references to documents you’ll rely on at the hearing) and agreeing the wording of the statements with you and your witnesses.
- Reviewing the other party’s witness statements and confirming whether they change our assessment of the claim and / or its value.
- Agreeing documents that will be used to understand your claim or defence in more detail, such as a ‘list of issues’, a chronology of events and/or a list of the key people involved.
- Preparing for and attending the final hearing. This will include either finding the right barrister to represent you on the day and instructing them or, if you’d like us to represent you, preparing what we’ll say in our opening and closing speeches and our questions for the other party’s witnesses.
- Discussing the outcome of the case with you and what, if anything, you can do next if you are unhappy with the outcome.
These are an indication of the typical stages involved in a claim for unfair or wrongful dismissal. If some of these stages aren’t required, our fees could be lower.
You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only take our advice at some of the stages. We can discuss this with you at the start, and it’s likely to result in a lower fee.
The fee bandings above cover the typical stages of an unfair or wrongful dismissal claim. Not all types of employment tribunal claim or stages in the employment tribunal process are covered. For example, they don’t include:
- Other types of employment tribunal claims, like discrimination claims, unlawful deduction from wages or equal pay claims
- Group claims, i.e. acting on behalf of several claimants in a single claim against a company
- Appealing the decision to the Employment Appeal Tribunal
- Related claims in other areas, such as a breach of contract claim in a civil court or a personal injury claim.
We can assist you with these claims and provide you with a specific fee estimate when we take your initial instructions.
The time that it takes depends when your case reaches its conclusion. If a settlement is agreed during pre-claim conciliation for example, the case may be resolved within 1 to 3 months of the dismissal. But, if the case goes to a final hearing, the timescales are more likely to be in the region of 6-12 months from start to finish. It’s always possible to reach a resolution at any time before the final hearing, for example through a settlement via ACAS. We can discuss the full range of alternative dispute resolution options available to you at the start, and throughout, your case.
These timescales are an estimate. We’ll be able to give you a more accurate timescale as the case progresses, and as we know what external factors will influence it. If your case is complex and needs a hearing that’ll last longer than 1 or 2 days, for example, you may have to wait longer for the employment tribunal to be available.
All of the lawyers in our employment team have experience in bringing and defending claims in employment tribunals, including representing clients at the final hearing. Richard Thomas leads our team and we currently have 15 lawyers (from trainee to partner level) specialising in employment law with over 160 years of collective experience.
For more information, including examples of our work, visit our service page.
Please get in touch if you have any questions, firstname.lastname@example.org