Employers frequently complain that there is ‘no downside’ for employees who bring spurious claims.
One of our recent cases- O (Financial Advisers) Ltd v RS- shows that the tribunals can be persuaded to impose tough sanctions in such cases. Having defended the Claimant’s constructive dismissal and whistleblowing claims, he was ordered to repay our client his training fee.
The Claimant referred to no less than 64 false grievances. Instead of being drawn into these, an investigation of his CV led to a finding of material misrepresentation which negated the whole employment contract and associated claims fell with that.
Initially, the tribunal refused to even hear our client’s claim for legal costs but after a successful challenge in the Employment Appeal Tribunal, Employment Judge Goodman ordered the Claimant to pay £20,000 to reflect the unreasonable way in which the claim was pursued.
Costs orders are very rare in Employment Tribunals. In 2015 whilst over 100,000 claims were lodged, awards were made in only 870 cases and the average order was only £1000.
The file has been referred to Central London County Court for enforcement.