With employment law ever changing and increasingly complex, failure to obtain the correct legal advice will almost inevitably result in serious and expensive consequences.
At Andrew Kingston & Co., we offer a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment law services, to both businesses and individuals, including advice relating to:
- Unfair dismissal.
- Wrongful dismissal.
- Settlement agreements.
- Employment Tribunal representation.
- Maternity, paternity and adoption rights.
- Redundancy and restructuring.
- Staff handbooks, employment contracts, policies & procedures.
Our clients can expect a pragmatic and commercial approach, giving you the advice you need.
Our fees for bringing or defending a claim for unfair/wrongful dismissal will be charged at £150.00 per hour plus V.A.T. The probable range of fees for a case of that type is from £1,500.00 to £10,500 plus V.A.T., depending on the complexity of the claim and the behaviour of the other party. If other issues arise, such as discrimination, then our fees are likely to be considerably more than these figures. Examples of things which increase the complexity and cost of a claim are the need for a preliminary Hearing, the number of witnesses or documents, the other party not having lawyers, the need to amend a claim or defence or provide additional information about it, and the need for (and length of) a full Trial before an Employment Judge. The bottom end of the range of figures will only apply to a case which settles by agreement before or just after the claim is issued. The top end of the range will apply to a case that goes to Trial, and is likely to increase if the Trial lasts longer than one day and we are required to attend it with you.
In addition, there may be payments to be made to third parties, which we handle on your behalf. At present there are no Tribunal fees, but the Government might re-introduce them in future. If a preliminary Hearing or a full Trial is needed you will have to pay the fees of a Barrister to represent you. Those fees are likely to be between £1,500.00 and £4,500.00 per day, plus V.A.T., depending on the Barrister’s length of experience since qualifying.
Our own fees include:-
- Taking your initial instructions, reviewing your documents, and advising you on the prospects of success and the amounts that the Tribunal might award (both of which will be kept under review as the case progresses)
- Trying to achieve settlement, through ACAS or otherwise
- Preparing and lodging your claim or defence
- Preparing a schedule (or counter schedule) of loss
- Advising you on the documents received from the other side
- Instructing a Barrister for any preliminary Hearing and (if needed) attending it with you and the Barrister
- Exchanging background documents with the other side and preparing or agreeing a Bundle of Documents for use at the Trial
- Obtaining the necessary information from you and any witnesses, and preparing Witness Statements to be signed
- Reviewing and advising you on the other side’s Statements
- Preparing and/or agreeing the final documents needed for the Trial
- Instructing your Barrister in readiness for the Trial
- If needed, attending the Trial with you and the Barrister
- The making of any application for costs to be paid to you by the other side, or by you to them.
How long it will take to resolve your case, from receiving your initial instructions, largely depends on how and at what stage it is resolved. If it was settled before or shortly after the proceedings were issued at the Tribunal, that should normally take no more than about 12 weeks. If it had to go to a full Trial, that could take up to 9 to 12 months.
We may also be able to offer individual clients who are making claims funding arrangements (called a Damages Based Agreement or DBA), based on a share (35% including V.A.T.) of the damages. This is payable if the claim is successful, meaning that you are awarded damages either as the result of a settlement at any stage of the matter, or by the Tribunal. Your liability to pay applies even if your former employer fails to pay the damages.
A DBA can only be offered after a full review of the circumstances of the client and the case, and discussing any other funding options which may be available. For example, many people have insurance cover for legal costs, perhaps without realising that they do. It is added on to many insurance policies, such as household or car insurance. If you have such insurance cover, the insurer will normally choose a panel Solicitor to act for you, and the insurer will pay their fees.
We are not able to offer free consultations or reviews. Before carrying out a review of the case, we ask that £360.00 (including V.A.T.) is deposited with us so as to cover the probable time involved. We will then be able to advise on the merits of your claim and whether we would be prepared to deal with it on the basis of a DBA. We expect to be able to do this within one week of receipt of all the information and documents we request from you.
Even if we agree to act for you under a DBA, we cannot guarantee that a Barrister will also agree to do so. You may therefore have to pay during the course of the case the Barrister’s fees that are mentioned above. If Tribunal fees are re-introduced in future, you will also have to pay those unless you qualify for a reduced fee based on your financial circumstances.
In all cases, if the other party does not pay any damages or costs agreed or awarded to you, enforcement costs will be incurred and are payable by you in addition to our fees and other expenses as described above.