Employment Tribunal guidance
- Judicial mediation
- Charter statement
- Our aims, standards and targets
- Special requirements
- Listening to you
- Sources of information
Employment Tribunals hear claims about matters to do with employment. These include:
- unfair dismissal
- redundancy payments and
We also deal with a range of claims relating to wages and other payments. You can get a full list, called a jurisdiction list, from any local tribunal office or the Employment Tribunals public enquiry line on 0845 795 9775.
If you are not sure that your claim is something that an Employment Tribunal can deal with, contact the public enquiry line or ACAS (on 08457 47 47 47 which is open from 0800 to 2000 Monday–Friday and 0900 to 1300 on Saturday)
An Employment Tribunal is like a court but it is not as formal; for example, nobody wears a wig or gown. However, like a court it must act independently and cannot give legal advice. Almost all hearings are open to the public.
The Employment Tribunals are independent judicial bodies who determine disputes between employers and employees over employment rights. Our website provides information about the tribunal's procedures and gives guidance on how you make or respond to a claim.
Administrative support to employment tribunals is provided by the HM Courts and Tribunal Service, an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ)
New Claimants in Northern Ireland should apply to the Industrial Tribunals and Fair Employment Tribunal, Northern Ireland.
When a person makes an Employment Tribunal claim normally the process which is followed involves a Hearing taking place before an Employment Tribunal at which evidence is heard and legal arguments are made with a decision (judicial determination) then being made on the case.
The process is a formal one involving evidence being led from witnesses and cross examination, which is very similar to what happens in an ordinary court. Mediation provides an alternative way to resolve a dispute which does not involve going through the normal tribunal hearing process. It is a form of what is commonly referred to as ADR - Alternative Dispute Resolution.
More information on judicial mediation
This page sets out the standards of service we aim to provide and explains how you can let us know when you are not pleased with our service. Most people coming to a tribunal will be concerned about what to expect. We aim to reduce these concerns by giving you a helpful, polite and professional service.
Our aims, standards and targets
We aim to:
- acknowledge and deal with your application within three working days of receiving it;
- answer 95% of letters within 10 working days of receiving them;
- bring 75% of single cases to a hearing within 26 weeks of receiving them;
- meet the people involved in a case within 10 minutes of their arrival at reception;
- explain what will happen during the hearing;
- deal with as many cases as possible during each day (this might mean that a number of cases are 'unallocated' and will start as soon as there is a tribunal available);
- send a written judgment within four weeks of the hearing in 85% of cases; and
- answer 100% of phone calls within six rings. We will be polite, give our name and give the name of our organisation.
If you, or anyone coming to a tribunal with you, have a disability or a particular need we can make reasonable adjustments to help you use our service. You should contact the office dealing with your case about your needs as soon as possible to discuss the matter.
We can provide the following:
- Our standard booklets in Welsh;
- Foreign language and sign language interpreters at the tribunal hearing; and
- Accessible offices for people with disabilities. If necessary, we will arrange for the case to be heard elsewhere.
If an alternative format or more accessible version is required (e.g. a large print version or Braille copy etc) then a request should be made to the local court or tribunal.
We can make reasonable adjustments to help you use our service. You should tell the office about your needs as soon as possible. We may also be able to help anyone who comes to a tribunal hearing with you.
Please note that our booklets are only produced in English and Welsh.
Listening to you
We welcome your comments, compliments and complaints and use them to improve our service. We do this by:
- paying attention to your comments, compliments and complaints;
- asking you to fill in comment forms; and
- carrying out local and national surveys.
Employment Judges and members are independent of the HM Courts and Tribunal Service so we cannot look into claims that:
- the tribunal's judgment was unfair or wrong; or
- the Employment Judge did not handle your case properly.
Please tell us if you want to complain about our service. A member of staff will try to sort out your problem immediately. If you are still not happy, please speak to our Customer Services Officer at the office dealing with your claim.
If you want more information about how to complain, ask us for our booklet "How to complain". You may also be able to claim compensation if you have lost money because of a mistake by our staff. If you want to claim compensation, you must write to the manager at the tribunal office dealing with your case. In certain circumstances you cannot claim compensation. For example, you cannot claim compensation if the case is not heard on time or is postponed, because this does not result from an administrative decision.
Sources of information
If you want more information about us, you should contact:
Employment Tribunals Public Enquiry line: 0845 795 9775
Or your local tribunal office