Recently released quarterly figures from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) show the number of employment tribunals is continuing to rise. There were 42,700 multiple claims received this quarter, up 344% on the same period last year.
Abolition of tribunal fees
The increase is most likely due to the abolition of employment tribunal fees following the supreme court ruling on 26 July 2017. Before the removal of fees, employment tribunal figures remained stable at around 4,300 per quarter, but have been increasing consistently since. The number of tribunals this quarter are for the first time higher than the level in July to September 2013, before fees were first introduced.
Following the abolition of fees and the launch of the employment tribunal fee refund scheme in October 2017, there were 14,500 applications for refunds received and 12,400 refund payments made, with a total monetary value of £10,615,000.
Between 1 April 2018 and 30 June 2018, 5,100 refund applications were received and 4,700 refund payments were made with a total value of £4,018,300.
Increased caseload causing backlog
The figures show an increase in overall volume of claims and a decrease in disposals has led to a rise in outstanding caseloads of 24% from the last quarter. Earlier this year, the MoJ began recruitment of 54 new judges to deal with the increased caseload.
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