The need for employers to get covered up
As we have reported previously, employment claims continue to increase apace. 2017 gave us a 90% increase in ACAS notifications and this year looks to be a further 25% on that figure.
We think this means that currently there are now around 4 new ACAS notifications every hour and our larger clients face roughly a 1 in 15 chance of facing a Tribunal each year.
We continue to see an increase in vexatious claims, often professionally supported and with a wide range of spurious extra complaints and a Data Access request - all of which is designed to increase the perceived complexity, length and cost of the Tribunal.
Faced with an expensive longer hearing, many insurers will look for a deal to settle, so it’s game set and match to the unjustified.
No insurer likes an expensive pyric victory. In a recent example a claimant alleged that a delay in agreeing to an early retirement application was due to disability discrimination. It was not, it was simply a poor process that was badly administered but it took a full ET, an Appeal and finally a Court of Appeal decision to lay the claim to rest. With legal costs in the region of £70,000 any business without adequate insurance would find this a hard cost to bear.
Our average insured claim cost is now £8000, enough to dent the annual dividends of most smaller companies and we have met several claims over £50,000 already this year.
Best advice for SME’s is to completely ‘outsource the employment risk’ – offer them an integrated advice and insurance retainer costing as little as a £150 per month from your favourite local HR provider.