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Third time…not so lucky

As many employers who have experienced Tribunal claims will know, there can be significant delays in the claim being heard as a result of applications to postpone being made by an often unrepresented claimant. These applications can lead to additional time and costs being incurred.

In response to concerns about the length and costs of Tribunal proceedings, BIS has been launched a consultation which is open until March 2015 with the aim of trying to reduce the number and lateness of these applications.

Proposals include:

1. Limiting the number of applications to postpone to two per party. Any further applications will only be granted in exceptional circumstances.

2. Applications received less than 7 days before the intended start of a hearing will only be granted in exceptional circumstances or where the delay will aid settlement or has been caused by the Tribunal.

3. Where a further application is granted to a party at short notice, the Tribunal must consider whether it would be appropriate to grant a costs order against the successful party.

It is unclear when these changes would come into effect if approved but the fact that they are being actively considered offers employers hope that any future experience of Tribunal claims may not be so protracted and that at least some costs may be recoverable.

Please feel free to contact us on 0191 282 2880 for a no obligation chat or email us if you require further advice.

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