Umbrella company contractors might be interested to learn that the Supreme Court has ruled against ‘unlawful’ employment tribunal fees.
The fees that were introduced four years ago mean that the government must now refund a reported £32 million to claimants due to a legal battle launched by trade union Unison that was based on the fact that the fees were preventing workers from getting access to justice.
The Supreme Court ruled that the government’s introduction of the fees mean that they were acting ‘unlawfully and unconstitutionally’, with employment tribunal fees ranging form £390-£1,200, which in turn led to a 70% reduction in the number of cases brought.
Simon McVicker, IPSE Director of Policy, commented, “IPSE is delighted with the Supreme Court’s judgement. Since the introduction of the fees, countless numbers of self-employed people have been denied access to justice because of prohibitive fees. Today’s decision brings us closer to ending this iniquity.
“However, there are still concerns for freelancers who have to rely on tribunals to achieve clarity over their employment status – they’re costly, time-consuming and can make going about day-to-day business very challenging.
“That is why we are calling for the Government to introduce a statutory definition of self-employment to end this confusion, and improve working conditions for the UK’s 4.8 million self-employed people.”