In what circumstances are respondents required to pay tribunal fees?

On 26 July 2017, the Supreme Court held that the employment tribunal fees system is unlawful as it prevents access to justice. HM Courts and Tribunals Service will not be able to continue charging employment tribunal fees under the current system, as the Supreme Court has quashed the legislation that brought it into force. It is not yet known how the Government plans to replace the fees system.

Under the system that has been ruled unlawful, employment tribunal issue fees and hearing fees were payable by the claimant, but if the respondent made certain applications during the proceedings, it was responsible for paying the application-specific fees.

The fees payable by a respondent on making the relevant application were:

  • £100 for a reconsideration of a default judgment;
  • £100 (for a level one claim) or £350 (for a level two claim) for a reconsideration of a judgment following a final hearing; and
  • £160 for an employer's contract claim (ie a counter claim).

The respondent was also responsible for paying a fee of £600 if the case was listed for judicial mediation.