Employment tribunal statistics: headlines

Claimants in person

The number of individuals representing themselves in the employment tribunals has remained fairly constant over the last 3 years: 30,195 in 05/06; 31,694 in 06/07 and 31,780 in 07/08

Maximum and median awards

The median award for unfair dismissal was £4,000; the medians for race, sex and disability discrimination were £8,120; £5,200 and £8,363 respectively. The highest award for unfair dismissal (including basic award) was £76,536; and the highest for race, sex and disability discrimination were £68,991, £131,466 and £227,208.


The costs figures are badly explained in the published statistics, but costs seem to have been awarded against claimants in 327 cases (out of a total of 189,303: that is, in 0.17% of cases) and against employers in 134 cases. The median award was £1,000, and the maximum was £17,775.

These figures would seem to exclude those – very rare – cases in which costs in excess of the limit of £10,000 are sought, and the costs question sent to the county court for assessment.


There were 671 appeals to the Employment Appeal Tribunal, of which 303 were dismissed at either a full or a preliminary hearing 235 were allowed (in full or in part) and 133 were withdrawn.

These numbers do not include those that were dismissed on the papers under rule 3(7) and either not taken to an oral hearing, or dismissed at an oral hearing under rule 3(10).

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