UNISON wins judicial review hearing into Employment Tribunal fees

MoJIt was reported in HR Review yesterday that UNISON, the trade union has won a preliminary victory by succeeding with a hearing at the High Court regarding the introduction of fees in the Employment Tribunal.

UNISON applied to the High Court in June 2013 for a judicial review of the Ministry of Justice’s decision to introduce Employment Tribunal fees – fees which commenced on 29 July 2013. The trade union has sought the judicial review as it believes fees in the Employment Tribunal make it “virtually impossible” for workers to exercise their rights under UK employment law and that it disproportionately affects women and other persons with “protected characteristics” under the Equality Act 2010.

It was reported last week that the High Court had rejected an application on the papers for the judicial review but it appears that UNISON continued the legal challenge and succeeded this week with an oral hearing at the Royal Courts of Justice.

Dave Prentis, UNISON General Secretary, commented on the decision: “I am pleased that UNISON has been successful in getting permission for a Judicial Review hearing. The introduction of punitive fees for taking a claim to an employment tribunal, would give the green light to unscrupulous employers to ride roughshod over already basic workers’ rights”

Chris Hadrill, an employment solicitor at Redmans, commented: “UNISON has certainly not won the battle for judicial review but the challenge will continue. We should see the result of this struggle in or around October 2013”