Cable announces fines for employers who breach employment laws

Emplyment Law & HR update 23/11/2011

Employment Tribunals will have the power to impose fines on employers who breach employment laws, it was announced today. Announcing a package of employment measures, Business Secretary Vince Cable confirmed that the proposals for the penalties, first outlined in the Resolving Workplace Disputes consultation paper earlier this year, will come into force, possibly as soon as next April.

The penalties will be paid directly to the government exchequer, and will be in addition to any compensation ordered to be paid by the employer to the person making the tribunal claim.

Penalties to be paid by employers who lose tribunal claims will be:

  • Up to 50% of the compensation they must pay the employee
  • Between £100 and £5,000
  • Paid to the government
  • In addition to compensation awarded to the claimant
  • Awarded at the discretion of the employment tribunal judge

The package of measures announced today also includes

  • Increasing the period an employee needs to work for an employer to be able to make a claim for unfair dismissal from one year to two years – from April 2012;
  • Requiring employees to submit their claims to ACAS before going to an employment tribunal – but this is unlikely to be implemented before 2014;
  • Unfair Dismissal claims will be heard before a tribunal judge alone (i.e. without members drawn from employee and employer bodies) from April 2012.


If you would like further information, and already subscribe to RBS Mentor, please call the Advice Service. If you would like more information on how Mentor could help your business in situations like this and many others, contact us today for information.


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