The annual statistics have been published by the Tribunal Service for the year 1 April 2009 to 31 March 2010.
The statistics show the number of claims that have been submitted and disposed of in the past 12 months. Also, for the first time, the performance of the Tribunals Service has been measured against certain key indicators.
The number of claims that have been submitted to the Employment Tribunal has increased by 56% compared to 2008/2009. A total of 236,100 claims were received, with 164,800 (an increase of 90% from the previous year) of these relating to multiple claimants.
The number of claims relating to unfair dismissal, breach of contract and redundancy increased by 17% on last year. The number of cases that the Employment Tribunal has disposed of in the past year has also risen by 22% from last year. However, as disposals have failed to keep pace with the increased receipts, there are still more than 400,000 claims within the tribunal system that remain outstanding.
It is likely that the significant rise in claims is yet another result of the recession with businesses deciding to make staff cut backs in an attempt to survive the downturn. However, as attractive as a reduction in labour costs may be, with more and more employees showing a willingness to exercise their employment law rights, employers must ensure that they have proper redundancy procedures in place to reduce the risk of successful claims being made against them.