By how much can a tribunal increase an unfair dismissal award where an employer refuses to comply with an order for re-engagement or reinstatement?
A dismissed employee who has won a claim for unfair dismissal and, as a result, obtained an order for reinstatement or re-engagement will be entitled as part of that order to receive a compensatory award equivalent to the pay and benefits that they would have received, had there been no dismissal, between the date of their termination and the date of re-employment or reinstatement ordered by the tribunal. The normal statutory cap on the compensatory award (currently £88,519 or 52 weeks' pay if this is lower) is not applicable in these circumstances. The employee will also be entitled to a basic award, which is calculated in accordance with a fixed formula.
If the employer subsequently refuses to re-engage or reinstate the individual, they will be entitled to an additional award of compensation over and above the basic and compensatory awards. The additional award is between 26 and 52 weeks' pay, with a "week's pay" currently capped at £538. In these circumstances, the normal statutory cap on the compensatory award will be disapplied to the extent necessary to enable the combined amount of the compensatory and additional awards to reflect fully the value of the pay and benefits lost during the period between the dismissal and the date that the employee should have been re-engaged or reinstated. The additional award will be made unless the employer can show that it was not practicable for it to comply with the re-engagement or reinstatement order.