The risks are not just financial: an employer's reputation can suffer, making it more difficult to recruit, as well as making it more likely that further claims will result. Employers need to manage these risks proactively to prevent claims arising, and reactively once claims are brought.
Our approach is to help you understand the specific risk and so prevent claims arising as well as helping you to manage any claim as efficiently as possible in line with your overall strategic objectives.
There are a variety of pricing structures for handling tribunal claims available in the market: fixed fee, menu pricing, capped fees, annual fees for handling a number of claims.
We have experience of working on all or any of these bases, but always try to ensure that the particular fee arrangement reflects the client's appetite for risk, its claim profile, and its culture for how it likes to handle its claims. We have a simple tool to help clients decide on the best arrangement for them.
Our track record shows that we consistently help clients reduce their numbers and cost of claims by our proactive and pragmatic approach.
DWF’s Employment Service Hub is an end-to-end digital platform spanning your complete employment law needs, from instruction and allocation of work, through to case management, document sharing, cost control and personalised management information reports. Instruct us quickly and efficiently, see real-time case status', access live and trend reporting, control costs and take pre-emptive action to prevent future issues. Find out more >
On 6 December 2018 the SRA introduced pricing transparency rules for certain areas of law meaning that law firms now have to publish some of their prices online. One of those areas is the conduct of employment tribunal cases for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal claims.
Employment cases and the way in which they are priced depends heavily on a number of key factors relating to the case such as the complexity of law, facts, evidence, the number of witnesses involved and most importantly the number of days of tribunal time required for the full hearing. Therefore, we strongly suggest that if you are interested in our services you speak to us to see what bespoke service we can offer you or your business rather than relying solely on the information below, which only sets out the range of our charges by way of illustration.
If you choose DWF Employment, who will represent you?
Our management team has well over 100 years of collective experience in delivering high quality work in all matters relating to employment. The team is currently listed within the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners (legal directories) and it is noted for its excellence within its field of expertise. For further information please visit www.legal500.com or https://www.chambersandpartners.com/ and search "DWF Employment".
In terms of who would specifically act on your behalf that would depend on the nature of the claim. Our aim is to always complete each task to the highest possible standard but for a competitive price so we have a wide spectrum of talent at our disposal to achieve this overall aim. We are currently a team of approximately 45 fee-earners. Simple cases and tasks would be undertaken by junior lawyers and more complex work by the more senior members of the team.
Within our team our ten partners each have a minimum of 15 years' experience. All of our people are also fully trained and supervised. For further details on the employment team, including experience, please visit the find a lawyer page of our corporate website and search "employment" under "all services".
Our fees for unfair and wrongful dismissal cases
These charges will depend on a number of variables including the complexity of the case as outlined above.
Our pricing for bringing and defending claims for unfair and wrongful dismissal:
Simple case: £5,000 plus VAT (£1,000) to £7,500 plus VAT (£1,500)
Medium complexity case: £7,500 plus VAT (£1,500) to £12,500 plus VAT (£2,500)
High complexity case: £12,500 plus VAT (£2,500) to £50,000 plus VAT (£10,000) or higher in exceptionally complex matters
The ranges set out above are exclusive of costs for representation at the hearing. Should a member of the DWF employment team represent you at the hearing the likely cost will be between £1,200 plus VAT (£220) and £2,500 plus VAT (£500) per day of the hearing. Further details of the options and cost of representation are set out under the "Disbursements" heading below.
Examples of factors that could make a case more complex:
Please note that the above estimates are based purely on unfair and wrongful dismissal claims and exclude all other claims, including: discrimination, whistleblowing, health and safety, Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006, and union activity claims.
If you wish to have a team member attend the hearing as well as an advocate (for note taking and tactical advice during the day), there will be an additional charge of approximately £750 plus VAT (£150) to £1,250 plus VAT (£250) per day. Please note that these figures are based on a relatively junior member of the team attending and a fee being agreed with you. If a request was made for a more senior member of the team to attend, the fees would be higher. Generally, we would allow one to five days for a hearing depending on the complexity of your case.
Please note that we have a number of arrangements with legal expense insurers for tribunal work which is dealt with outside of the above structure.
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees or counsel's fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to make it easier for you.
When a case goes to a hearing we offer our clients a range of options with regard to representation. The options include:
Counsel will charge a fee for preparation of the case and the first day of the hearing (known as a brief fee) and a "refresher fee" for each additional day of the hearing. The brief fee can vary depending on the experience of the advocate but as an estimate can be between £750 plus VAT (£150) to £2,000 plus VAT (£400) and the refresher is estimated between £650 plus VAT (£130) to £1,000 plus VAT (£200). We will discuss the various options with you to ensure you have the best possible representation.
If any other disbursements are incurred we will, of course, advise you of these charges in advance and many disbursements will be charged at fixed prices once we have discussed your specific requirements.
The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:
The stages set out above are an indication and if some of the stages above are not required, the fee will be reduced. You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only have our advice in relation to some of the stages. This can also be arranged on your individual needs.
How long will my matter take?
The time that it takes from taking your initial instructions to the final resolution of your case depends largely on the stage at which your case is resolved. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take one to two months. If your claim proceeds to a final hearing, your case is likely to take 8 to 12 months. This is just an estimate and we will, of course, be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.
To summarise, cases vary so much in complexity and scope that speaking to us to discuss our services and bespoke pricing in greater detail is the best step you can take. We will have a short initial telephone call with you free of charge to understand the details of your case and see how we can help.