Employees who have been employed continuously by their employer for two years or more have the right not to be unfairly dismissed.
Some dismissals are automatically unfair, for example, a dismissal relating to childbirth or whistleblowing.
If you have been dismissed from work and you believe that your employer’s decision to dismiss you was unfair, our employment solicitors can support you in pursuing an unfair dismissal claim.
Equally, if you feel that you have no choice but to resign from your role due to the actions of your employer, we can help with a claim for constructive unfair dismissal.
We will review your case and establish whether you have the basis for a claim. Losing your job can be incredibly stressful, our employment team can offer straightforward advice to ensure that you understand your position and support you through the process to claim unfair dismissal compensation.
Wherever possible, we will seek to negotiate a settlement, but our team is also highly experienced in representing clients at employment tribunals. We can therefore always give you the best chance of receiving maximum compensation.
Remember, there are very short time limits for making claims in the tribunal, so you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.
Get in touch with our employment lawyers in Orpington
Our Employment team can assist with
An employee can make an unfair dismissal claim if their employment is terminated without a good reason and/or if their employer does not follow a fair process in relation to the dismissal.
Knowing whether a dismissal is unfair can be difficult to assess by yourself, so it is always sensible to speak to expert solicitors for unfair dismissal advice before making a claim.
An employee can make a constructive dismissal claim if they resign because they think their employer has seriously breached their employment contract. For instance, an employee might have felt the need to resign because they have not been paid the amount agreed in the contract or if they have been discriminated against or bullied and the employer has failed to deal with their grievance.
The law around constructive dismissal is complicated, it is important to seek advice at an early stage if you believe you may have claim.
Employment tribunal representation
Making an unfair dismissal claim against an employer can feel daunting, but our employment team can support you all the way. We can contact ACAS on your behalf and offer representation at the employment tribunal to ensure that your claim is presented in the best way.
Frequently asked questions about unfair dismissal
What are the grounds for claiming unfair dismissal?
An employee can make an unfair dismissal claim if they have been dismissed without a fair reason or if the employer did not follow a fair procedure when dismissing them.
The five potentially fair reasons for dismissal are:
- Some other substantial reason
If you suspect that unfair dismissal has occurred, the sooner that you get in touch with a solicitor, the better.
How do you claim unfair dismissal?
Prior to making a claim for unfair dismissal, it is necessary to contact Acas to commence Early Conciliation in order to explore settlement with your employer. Before issuing a claim, you will need a certificate from ACAS to confirm that you have completed this step.
We can guide you through the Early Conciliation process or liaise with Acas on your behalf. We will take your detailed instructions and ensure that you are kept up to date at every stage. It may be possible to agree a settlement with your employer to avoid having to take your case to an employment tribunal.
Is it hard to prove unfair dismissal?
We will assess your case and advise you on the strength of your claim. We will also review and advise you on the merits of exploring settlement with your employer.
What is the difference between wrongful and unfair dismissal?
Wrongful dismissal is a contractual claim for the employers failure to give an employee proper notice to terminate their employment or to pay in lieu of their notice pay. On the other hand, unfair dismissal is a statutory claim based on the failure to dismiss the employee fairly.
How much compensation can you claim for unfair dismissal?
The amount of unfair dismissal compensation an employment tribunal would award following a successful claim is split into two parts:
- Basic award – calculated using a set formula based on how long you’ve worked for your employer, your age when you were dismissed and your weekly pay before tax and national insurance deductions
- Compensatory award – for the money you’ve lost due to being dismissed
If you are claiming discrimination, you may also be able to claim additional damages for your stress and upset.
Please note: Employment tribunals must take the ACAS Code of Guidance on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures into account when deciding an unfair dismissal claim.
If your employer has failed to follow the code, the tribunal may decide to increase your compensation by up to 25%, for example, if you have been dismissed for misconduct without a disciplinary hearing. Similarly, if an employee fails to follow the ACAS code, unfair dismissal compensation can be reduced by up to 25%.
Unfair and constructive dismissal case studies
Disputed redundancy and discrimination
Advising a senior executive and member of executive committee of national organisation in a disputed redundancy claim including claims of unfair dismissal, sex discrimination, bullying and harassment. Negotiating settlement in the region of £100,000.
Senior executive dismissal and loss of benefits
Acting for a Managing Director accused of misconduct. Advising on termination of employment and loss of contractual benefits. Negotiating settlement of all claims.
Unfair dismissal and race discrimination
Advising employee on claims of unfair dismissal, race discrimination, bullying and harassment. Assisting with grievance and successful negotiation of a settlement with employer of all claims in the region of £50,000.
Unfair dismissal, whistleblowing, bullying and harassment
Acting for employee in claims for unfair dismissal, whistleblowing, an aggravated against blue chip international company. Securing significant compensation for unfair dismissal in the region of £100,000.
Constructive dismissal, bullying and harassment
Advising employee in claims for constructive dismissal, aggravated bullying and harassment resulting in settlement of claims in the region of £70,000.
Sex and maternity discrimination
Acting for employee who was the sole employee to be made redundant following her return from maternity leave in claims for unfair dismissal and discrimination. Successful settlement of claims.
Age discrimination, bullying and harassment
Acting for employee with significant claims against a large national employer for age discrimination bullying and harassment. Successfully negotiating a settlement in the region of £90,000 at an early stage of the claim.
Advising a group of employees about their redundancy and on settlement agreements proposed by their employer.
Why choose Clarkson Wright & Jakes?
When you work with Clarkson Wrights & Jakes, you will receive outstanding legal support from a friendly and professional firm. We take the time to understand your individual circumstances, allowing us to provide the best support to you.
Four of our partners are ranked in the leading global directory Chamber & Partners, and Laura Claridge from our employment team is recognised as an associate to watch. We have an excellent reputation throughout Kent and the South East due to the commitment and talent of our staff.
Get in touch with our Employment team today
If you would like to discuss your unfair dismissal claim, get in touch with one of our lawyers today. You can call us on 01689 887887 or simply fill in our enquiry form and a member of our team will get back to you.