Clients of James & West Law instruct us either because they have received a strong personal recommendation or as a result of our industry leading reputation in the work we do. Our clients recognise that high standards of service and delivery are worth paying for. We are specialists in whistleblowing law and practice and can also advise on employment law more generally and with high value and/or complex employment and partnership disputes in the Employment Tribunal and High Court.
We are obliged by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) to provide transparency in respect of the prices we charge for particular types of work: specifically in respect of claims for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal. We provide this information below and hope it is useful in your decision as to which law firm to instruct.
Every client, and every client’s matter, is different, and the charges we make depend on a range of factors. These include the complexity and value of the matter, the seniority of the lawyer or lawyers engaged on it, and the amount of time it takes to complete.
The pricing below covers the following steps in the litigation: drafting the claim or defence, exchange of documents and witness statements, and the final hearing. It does not cover party-party correspondence or any other work such as relating to applications made by you or your opponent to the Tribunal. For example, in respect of specific document requests for further information. Please note that where VAT is charged it will be charged at the rate of 20%.
In all cases we strive to ensure that, as far as possible, our fees are proportionate to the complexity of the dispute and the value we can add to the matter. We charge primarily on a time spent basis. Our hourly rates for services for individuals vary depending on the seniority of the lawyer or lawyers engaged, and the complexity and value of the matter. We review our hourly rates on an annual basis and update them with effect from 1 November each year.
In the current financial year (2021/22) our hourly rates for work for individuals range from £160+VAT to £490+VAT. We also have affordable options for those who wish to manage their own case with expert advice at the right time. We will consider fixed fees for particular stages of a claim in appropriate cases or for example in relation to signing of a settlement agreement. If you have a serious public interest issue, we are committed to doing what we can to support you and finding a way to fund your case.
Bringing Employment Tribunal claims
James and West Law acts for employees bringing different types of Employment Tribunal claim against their employer. Often, these will be combinations of claims within one legal action, for example, unfair dismissal claims may be combined with claims for being victimised for whistleblowing or for discrimination. This makes it difficult to provide discreet pricing indications for individual causes of action and the following are necessarily approximate guides.
For unfair dismissal
A standalone claim for ‘ordinary’ unfair dismissal with a hearing length of 1 to 3 days may cost in the region of £10,000 to £50,000 + VAT, including disbursements.
Typical disbursements will include the fees of counsel (that is, a barrister to represent you at hearings: £5,000 to £10,000 + VAT), and incidental costs such as photocopying charges and couriers (£100 to £500 + VAT).
For wrongful dismissal
Stand-alone claims for wrongful dismissal (i.e. a claim for notice monies) in the Employment Tribunal is a relatively rare claim and given the current ceiling on compensation for this cause of action in the ET (£25,000) it is likely that higher value wrongful dismissal claims are typically brought in the Civil Courts where there is no ceiling applicable.
This head of claim may be added to another cause of action in the Employment Tribunal, such as whistleblowing. Were we to bring a standalone claim with a hearing length of 1 day, this may cost in the region of £10,000 to £30,000+VAT, including disbursements.
Again, typical disbursements will include the fees of counsel (£5,000 to £10,000 + VAT), and incidental costs such as photocopying charges and couriers (£100 to £500 + VAT).
Employment Tribunal proceedings for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal will (unless settled) last somewhere between 6 to 24 months between the issuing of the initial claim and the parties receiving the Tribunal’s judgment. The Tribunal will determine the precise case management timetable at the first preliminary hearing.
Necessarily, the above information should be treated by you as an indicative guide. The information given is not contractually binding between us.
Our service standard
For new prospective client seeking any type of employment law advice which is of a nature where we believe we can add value for what we charge, we understand how important it is that you receive prompt advice from an experienced lawyer.
We, therefore, offer a free, confidential, same-day call with a lawyer to understand what your matter is about, how we can help and also to provide you with an idea of what it may cost.
If you are interested in instructing James & West Law, our lawyers will provide you with a more accurate fee estimate during the initial call, and if you instruct us they will give you regular written updates on the costs incurred and further estimates of costs as the matter progresses.