Statistics from Acas show a staggering increase in the number of early conciliation notices and tribunal claims issued over the period since the abolition of tribunal fees in July 2017. Between the start of April 2017 and the end of July 2017, Acas was receiving around 1,700 early conciliation notifications per week. Following the abolition of tribunal fees, it has risen to around 2,200 per week – an increase of 500 per week.
The statistics also show that since 28 August 2017, there has been a 57% increase in ET1s received and an increase of 25% in early conciliation notices compared with the same period in 2016.
The Ministry of Justice has published a similar set of statistics showing that for the quarter October to December 2017, employment tribunal claims increased by 90% compared to the same quarter in 2017.
Clearly the impact of the abolition of tribunal fees has been immediate. It will be interesting to see if this trend continues or whether the recent surge in claims will settle down over the coming months.