The Court of Appeal has dismissed Unison’s challenge to the employment tribunal fees regime.
The Court ruled that the regime could not be viewed as preventing access to justice in light of the discretion to grant remission to claimants who did not meet the remission criteria but were in exceptional circumstances, and insufficient evidence as to the numbers who might have to rely on this discretion. The Court also rejected the indirect discrimination claim, finding that any discriminatory effect in charging a higher fee for Type B claims (including discrimination claims) was justified by those claims’ extra demands on tribunal resources. Unison has sought permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Justice is expected to complete its internal review of the impact of the introduction of employment tribunal fees by the end of the year, while the House of Commons Justice Select Committee is also seeking views by 30 September. The Scottish government has outlined plans to abolish tribunal fees in Scotland.