Employment tribunal claims for unfair or wrongful dismissal (pricing for employers)


The purpose of our pricing overview is to explain the pricing options available to you. AfterAthena is committed to transparency, being efficient in handling your work and providing you with what to

expect, without fear of unpleasant surprises.

It is our goal to provide you with exceptional quality work and the personal attention you would expect.

Our employment law team has many years of experience in dealing with all aspects of employment tribunals for employers. We have a team of lawyers who may work with you in defending a Tribunal claim. Regardless of who works on your matter, they will be supervised by a partner or senior member of the team – for more information on our employment law team, please click here.

Our fees

Our fees for defending claims brought against your business for unfair and wrongful dismissal are based on three bands, which we will be happy to discuss this with you.

We will advise you of the funding options available to you, for example, using any commercial legal expenses insurance your business is covered by.

Every case is different; there are different issues and level of complexity in each case.   A case can be heard over one day but depending on the issues. Amount of evidence and complexity of legal issues in the case; a case can be heard over a week or longer. Shorter simple cases will naturally be less expensive than longer more complex cases. 

All costs and fees are subject to VAT at the current rate 20%.

ItemEstimated Range of CostsVATTotal
Simple case defined as: Expected to be a one day hearing, claim of unfair dismissal or breach of contract or unlawful deduction of wages, disclosure of no more than 250 pages and no more than 2-3 witnessesOur fees £8,000 – £12,000
Barristers fees £1,500 – £2,500 (dependent on seniority)
£1,600 – £2,400
£300 – £500
£9,600 – £14,400
£1,800 – £3,000
Medium complex case defined as: usually a case of unfair dismissal but with an extra claim of discrimination bolted on with slightly more disclosure documents and up to 5 witnesses and assuming a 2-3 dayOur fees £10,000 – £20,000
Barristers Fees: £1,500 – £2,500 for 1st day plus £750 – £1,250 for each additional day (dependent on seniority)
£2,000 – £4,000
£300 – £500 for 1st day plus £150 – £250 for each additional day
£12,000 – £24,000
£1,800 – £3,000 for 1st day plus £900 – £1,500 for each additional day
High complex case defined as: assuming a 4+ day hearing, multiple claims being pursued, or multiple parties, complex issues of discrimination or trade union law, multiple witnesses and/or significant documentation/disclosureOur fees £15,000 – £40,000
Barristers Fees:  £2,500 – £5,000 for 1st day plus £750 – £1,250 for each additional day (dependent on seniority)
£3,000 – £8,000
£500 – £1,000 for 1st day plus £150 – £250 for each additional day
£18,000 – £48,000
£3,000 – £6000 for 1st day plus £900 – £1,500 for each additional day

We charge based on an hourly rate which varies depending on the member of staff dealing with your matter. Currently our lowest hourly rate is £111 plus VAT and c our highest hourly rate is £300 plus VAT. The seniority of the members of staff dealing with your case will depend on its complexity. We will discuss this with you when you instruct us. Hourly rates are reviewed every April.

The above information on costs is an estimate of our charges and they are not fixed fees.   We assess each case on its own facts and will give a concise estimate for work to be carried out on your behalf at the outset of each matter.   Costs information provided here is for guidance purposes only and is not indicative of costs in all similar claims before an Employment Tribunal which depends on the facts of the case, nor does it create any binding costs estimate on the firm.

Costs will vary depending on the details of each case, and once we assess your case, we provide you with more concise estimates for work. You may have legal expenses insurance cover for the costs of an Employment Tribunal claim and where this is the case, we will discuss funding arrangements with you.

If your claim were to be settled at any time during the proceedings, this would affect the overall cost to you.

Key stages

The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:

The work that is not included in our fee:

The stages set out above are an indication and if some of stages above are not required, the fee will be reduced. You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only have our advice in relation to some of the stages. This can also be arranged and agreed in advance based on your individual needs.


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 to ensure a smoother process.

Counsel’s (barristers) fees estimated in the table above (depending on the experience of the advocate) for attending a Tribunal Hearing (including preparation).

Note that we do require payments on account  in anticipation of disbursements to be incurred (including counsel fees). We usually expect client’s new to the firm to make an initial payment on account  of costs for the initial work to be undertaken.

Exclusions and Factors Which May Make a Case More Complex


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 0-6 weeks.

If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is likely to take in the region of 12-18 months. This is just an estimate and is dependent on the Employment Tribunal that the case is being administered by, the progression of the case, and the number of days the case is listed for. We will of course be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.