Our team of expert Employment Law solicitors is well versed in identifying and dealing with issues of discrimination at work.
Discrimination Law under the Equality Act 2010 is a complex area. We will be able to help you understand any particular claims that may be relevant to your situation and advise you on your options and the best way to proceed given the circumstances of your case. It may be that you wish to raise a grievance. We understand that your situation may be causing a great deal of stress or concern and will sympathetically advise and assist you so that you can present your grievance in the most effective manner.
Types of discrimination
We will be able to provide comprehensive and clear advice to you on the types of discrimination which may be relevant to your case. For example, direct or indirect discrimination, harassment, bullying and victimisation. We can advise you on how best to approach the situation. Under the Equality Act 2010, there are many strands of discrimination, and each type of discrimination needs to be linked to a “protected characteristic” for it to be unlawful and therefore something that could give rise to a claim. The protected characteristics are:
- Sexual Orientation
- Marriage/Civil Partnership
- Gender Reassignment
If you believe you have been discriminated against because of one of these characteristics then you should take legal advice.
Compensation for discrimination
Often, the benefit of being able to claim discrimination is that there is potentially no cap in any compensation, whereas claims for unfair dismissal are capped at £105,707, or 52 weeks’ gross salary, whichever is the lower. This is in addition to the basic award which can be ordered by the Tribunal of up to a maximum of £19,290 (these figures are from 6th April 2023).
With claims of discrimination you are entitled to claim “injury to feeling”, which may involve you receiving substantial compensation if it can be shown that you have suffered unlawful discrimination.
The current “Vento” bands for compensation for “injury to feelings” are as follows:-
- a lower band of £1,100 to £11,200 (less serious cases);
- a middle band of £11,200 to £33,700 (cases that do not merit an award in the upper band); and
- an upper band of £33,700 to £56,200 (the most serious cases), with the most exceptional cases capable of exceeding £56,200.
Using an Employment Tribunal
If you believe you have been subjected to unlawful discrimination you are entitled to pursue a claim before an Employment Tribunal. That claim could be pursued against your employer but also, where there is an individual perpetrator of discriminatory treatment (for example, as in a harassment case), against the individual perpetrator. For any such claim you will need to specify each and every alleged “act” of discrimination and this can often be very difficult without an intricate knowledge of the Equality Act 2010 and how it applies.
If you bring an Employment Tribunal claim for discrimination, then we can represent you at all stages of the litigation to ensure your case is expertly and robustly pursued. Before commencing an employment tribunal claim you must participate in the ACAS early conciliation process, which we can also support you with. https://www.acas.org.uk/early-conciliation