Whistleblowing, Discrimination, Harassment, Bullying & Grievances
Legal services for employees
Why Taylor Law?
There are strict laws in place to protect whistleblowers and victims of discrimination, harassment and bullying in the workplace. In addition, every employer should have a grievance procedure in place for employees to follow when raising an official complaint.
At Taylor Law we understand the strain of dealing with a difficult situation as an employee.
Harassment or victimisation at work can cause you stress and anxiety, sometimes to the point where you feel that you cannot continue in your role.
Our employment team are friendly and approachable and will give you practical advice and guidance to help you deal with your employer. We have an excellent track record of success in obtaining compensation for employees who have been unfairly treated.
We will support you throughout your case offering guidance and advice and we will negotiate robustly on your behalf.
We have experience of dispute resolution in all areas of employment law. We work hard to reach an agreement without going to court or to an employment tribunal where possible. If your case does go to an official hearing, you can be sure that we will provide you with strong representation.
When a worker reports wrongdoing that is in the public interest, this is classed as whistleblowing. A whistleblower has special protection at law and cannot be treated unfairly or dismissed because of the allegations they have made.
Behaviour that is classed as being in the public interest for the purposes of whistleblowing includes committing a criminal offence, endangering someone’s health and safety, causing risk or harm to the environment, breaking the law, covering up wrongdoing or a miscarriage of justice.
An employer may have a whistleblowing procedure in place, which should be followed where possible. You can also report the matter to the relevant official body. If you are concerned that someone is committing wrongdoing that goes against public interest or if you have been accused of this type of wrongdoing, it is advisable to seek legal advice to protect your rights.
Discrimination, harassment and bullying
Victimisation in the workplace can take many forms and is often extremely distressing for an employee.
Discrimination on the grounds of protected characteristics breaches the Equality Act 2010. These characteristics include age, disability, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion, gender and sexual orientation.
Discrimination can be both direct, such as paying male employees more than female employees, or indirect, for example promoting only full-time workers when part-time workers tend to include more women. Discrimination can also happen where an employer believes someone to have a certain characteristic, when in fact they do not.
Harassment is unwanted conduct towards someone on the grounds of a protected characteristic which violates their dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.
Bullying is abusive, cruel or humiliating conduct, usually by someone in a more senior position than the victim. Examples include unfair criticism, insults and spreading rumours about a person.
An employer should have a policy in place to deal with harassment and bullying. You should follow the procedure set out in this policy and, if the matter is not resolved, raise a formal grievance.
A grievance is any concern or complaint you may wish to raise formally with your employer. It is an official record of a problem and in some instances, for example if you intend to claim constructive dismissal, it is important that it is made before the claim begins.
An employer will usually have a grievance procedure in place which will normally follow the Acas Code of Practice, setting out a clear process for dealing with a complaint.
Help for employees
Coping with a difficult situation in the workplace can cause substantial stress and anxiety to you as an employee. At Taylor Law we will support you throughout the grievance process and make sure we are always available to speak to you to offer advice and guidance and to answer any questions you
Visit our frequently asked questions for more information.
Our Employment Fees and Costs
Our employment solicitors are:
Scott Taylor (Solicitor with at least 8 years’ experience)
Ben Tighe (Solicitor with at least 8 years’ experience)
Max Hornigold (Solicitor)
Angela Giannotti (Solicitor - London)
Chris Bennett (Junior Executive - London)
Our hourly charges are as follows:
Private (Leeds and Middlesbrough) :
Partners/Solicitors with at least 8 years’ experience - 265.00
Solicitors with at least 4 years’ experience - 230.00
Solicitors, Legal Executives, Senior Executives - 200.00
Trainee Solicitors - 140.00
Junior Executives/Assistants - 140.00
Private (London) :
Partners/Solicitors with at least 8 years’ experience - 450.00
Solicitors with at least 4 years’ experience - 325.00
Solicitors, Legal Executives, Senior Executives - 250.00
Trainee Solicitors - 150.00
Junior Executives/Assistants - 150.00
Lesser complexity case
This would tend to be a case where unfair dismissal is the sole claim and the matter is limited to a one-day hearing.
It would be in the region of £15000-£18,000 plus VAT and disbursements (if we instruct counsel).
Medium complexity case
This would be a case where there are additional claims to unfair dismissal, such as discrimination. This would also apply where the case for unfair dismissal requires a Preliminary Hearing or where the case is listed for a Final Hearing of two or three days’ duration.
This would be in the region of £20,500- £23000 plus VAT, plus counsel fees of approximately £1,500 for the first day of the Final Hearing and £1,000 for the refreshers for the second and subsequent days of the Final Hearing. .
Higher complexity case
This would be a case where the unfair dismissal claim involves multiple discrimination complaints or complex matters such as whistleblowing/making of protected disclosures and where the case is listed for a Final Hearing of two or more days’ duration.
From £20,000 to £25000 plus VAT, plus counsel fees of £1,500 for the first day of the Final Hearing and £1,000 for the second and subsequent days of the Final Hearing.
The following factors can have an impact on the complexity of a case:
- Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person
- Complex preliminary issues such as whether the claimant is disabled (if this is not agreed by the parties)
- The number of witnesses and documents
- If it is an automatic unfair dismissal claim. For example if the reason for dismissal is because of a protected disclosure or an employee’s pregnancy or maternity leave
The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:
- Taking initial instructions, reviewing the papers and advising on merits and likely compensation
- Entering into pre-claim conciliation
- Preparing a claim or response
- Reviewing and advising on a claim or response from other party
- Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process
- Preparing a schedule of loss
- Preparing for and attending a Preliminary Hearing
- Exchanging documents with the other party and agreeing a bundle of documents
- Taking witness statements, drafting statements, and agreeing their content with witnesses
- Preparing bundle of documents
- Reviewing and advising on the other party’s witness statements
- Agreeing a list of issues, a chronology and/or cast list
- Preparation for the Final Hearing or instructions to Counsel
The stages are not fixed and guaranteed, and we will adjust our costs accordingly when some stages are not required.
How long will my matter take?
The time that it takes from taking your initial instructions to the final resolution of your matter depends largely on the stage at which your case is resolved. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take 2-4 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is likely to take 9-18 months. This is just an estimate and we will of course be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf. Disbursements incur a VAT charge of 20%.
At Taylor Law we have an excellent reputation for successful outcomes for our clients in employment matters. If you would like to discuss how we can help you with your employment issue, we would be happy to hear from you. Time is often crucial in dealing with an employment problem, and it is therefore advisable to seek legal advice as soon as you can.
For an initial discussion, ring us on 0113 532 8100 (Leeds), 01642 221 108 (Middlesbrough) or 0203 780 7646 (London) or fill in our Contact Form.
“Thank you for all your help and advice, it really made a difference. Feedback, help and guidance. Thank you to all the team – first class”.