Justice, like the Ritz, is open to rich and poor alike

There seems to be some doubt about who actually said this.  It is of course nonsense, as the rough sleepers I used to pass on my way to work, waking in the shop doorways opposite the Ritz in London’s Piccadilly, would doubtless have confirmed.

So, the Supreme Court has declared employment tribunal fees unlawful.  I am surprised and relieved to see that over 56% of HR professionals agree with this ruling, according to the CIPD’s poll on the subject – and I am one of them.  Over 35% disagree with it and that does not surprise me either.  Dealing with an ET claim takes up a huge amount of time and is pretty stressful.

I have handled 4 employment tribunal claims in the last 18 years and would say 3 were spurious and the 4th – and most recent – unfortunate and unnecessary.  However, I have worked for relatively benevolent employers and know full well that they are not entirely typical.

The daughter of former neighbours of ours won a claim against her employer who simply sacked her for being pregnant.  If she had had to find £1200 to bring that claim, she probably would not have been able to pursue it.

I acknowledge that this ruling will probably have me spending many hours refuting another daft claim in the not-too-distant future.  However, I think this is the price of justice and one that I am prepared to pay to ensure that vulnerable, low paid employees cannot just be rolled over by unscrupulous employers.

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