Circular No: NCP/145
Our Ref: LA/2017
20th September 2017
To: Branches, Regional Councils & Regional Offices
Tribunal fees Update
I refer to my earlier circular of the 26th July 2017 where I advised that as of 26th July 2017, fees are no longer payable when bringing an employment case to tribunal. This means no one has to pay a fee to lodge a claim nor does a hearing fee have to be paid. If a claim has already been lodged and a notice to pay the hearing fee has been issued it will not have to be paid.
The Government have agreed to reimburse those who had paid the fees, the mechanism for reimbursing fees has not yet been announced. Further guidance will be given once we know the mechanism for recovery of fees. This is still under consideration by the MOJ. Preliminary meetings with the MOJ and Union Legal Officers would indicate that the application process is still under consideration. Our Legal Department is working with our Legal Suppliers to determine how much has been recovered from Respondents who will be entitled to claim back the fees where ordered by the Tribunal to pay them (except in the case of COT 3’s where it is unlikely that they will get refunds) and how much fees the Union have paid in unsuccessful cases. This in most cases will be a matter for the Union since we have paid the fees of members whose cases we have said have reasonable prospects. It is hoped that the Union will be able to claim these fees direct from the Tribunal rather than getting our members to apply for the fees back and then having to get the refund from them.
It is unclear also whether we shall be entitled to claim Interest on the fees. It is probably the case that this process will take months.
In addition the Court has ruled that those cases that were struck out for non-payment will need to be reinstated as though they were never struck out. This does not affect our members since we paid the fees. Reinstated cases and the process involved will be dealt with after the issue of reimbursements have been dealt with.
Will Regional Officers and Branches please note that the L2 forms and Guidance Notes and Repayment of Fees forms are being amended and reprinted. With immediate effect members are no longer required to complete the Form headed “Repayment of Fees” these should be destroyed. New Forms will be sent to the Regions when printed.
Circular No: NCP/145