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Time to enforce employment tribunal awards

In light of this, the government has agreed to look at measures to clamp down on non-payment of awards.
Some of the suggested measures include making changes to Employment Tribunal rules to give more power to judges, naming and shaming employers who fail to pay and making sure people know how they can take enforcement action.
The government will also look at what action people can take to make sure they get theirTribunal award if their employer has stopped trading.
The figures on the pay outs are quite shocking:
Only 49% of claimants who were granted an award were paid in full and 16% received only part of their payment.
This leaves more than a third of claimants who received no money at all, even after enforcement action was taken in some cases – which was only done by 22% of claimants.
The main reason given for not using enforcement proceedings to pursue an award was lack of awareness – claimants simply didn’t know what to do if their employer didn’t pay them what had been ordered.
Sarah Naylor, an employment solicitor, said: “Far too many cases are unresolved, leaving people out of pocket. It very much leaves a feeling that the Employment Tribunal is there for people to pursue their legal rights, but it has no real teeth when it comes to ensuring that claimants receive the pay outs that are awarded to them.
“A claimant is often very disheartened to find that after going through what is usually a lengthy and stressful Tribunal claim, they then have to face a further set of proceedings in the County Court or Fast Track Enforcement system to try and recover what they are due.
“The government must, in my view, come up with a simpler system that works and penalises employers who try to avoid paying the claimant the amount ordered by the Tribunal.”
If you need advice about taking enforcement action, or any other aspect of Employment Tribunals, contact our Employment Law Team on 01302 320621 or email info@athertongodfrey.co.uk
 

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