Employment tribunals deal with claims brought against employers by employees, typically relating to unfair and wrongful dismissals, discrimination, equal pay, and deductions from wages. Following recent reforms, employees must pay a fee to pursue a tribunal claim, and must contact Acas at the outset to try to resolve the dispute through early conciliation.

This factsheet examines the steps employees must take to start a claim and what the employer needs to do to respond in a timely fashion. It looks at the main facets of the formal tribunal hearing, including the types of hearing, preparation needed, representatives involved, possible outcomes, and procedures at the hearing. The factsheet concludes by looking at the alternative of settling claims through conciliation or mediation (rather than going to an employment tribunal), and describes the key features of settlement agreements.

CIPD viewpoint

What is an employment tribunal?

Starting and responding to a claim

The tribunal hearing

Settlement of claims

Useful contacts and further reading

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