By way of an update, the Ministry of Justice has published tribunal statistics for January to March 2014 which show a continuation in the reduction in the number of claims since fees were introduced in July 2013. This time the drop was around 59% for single individuals compared with the same period in 2013.
Unison has also had a date window for its appeal in its judicial review challenge to the introduction of tribunal fees. The appeal is set to be heard between 10th September and 10th December 2014. The judicial review failed in part initially due to lack of evidence and Unison now have two sets of statistics from the Ministry of Justice to support their claim. We await news from the Government as to whether they will review matters before this time as indicated at the original judicial review.
The fee remission system has also been revised effective 30th June 2014. Applicants no longer need original copies of documents and can print online bank statements. They can produce DWP correspondence over a longer period and there is no longer a requirement to tell HMCTS the exact amount of disposable capital they have just the threshold it falls into. Previously if a piece of information was missing from the form HMCTS would reject it but now they will endeavour instead to contact the applicant to determine the missing information. There have also been some changes to the form to simplify matters.
Finally BIS have published the 2013 Survey of Employment Tribunal applications which is the first comprehensive survey for five years. It highlights a number of statistics including that over 75% of Claimants considered it had been worthwhile bringing a claim and 50% of those surveyed said that if they had been required to pay a fee, this would have influenced their decision to bring a claim.