If you have been discriminated against at work, you have a right to bring a claim in the Employment Tribunal for compensation.
Employers have a legal duty not to discriminate against you directly or indirectly.
However, many employees shy away from bringing a claim because they are unsure whether the behaviour they have been subjected to amounts to discrimination. Our Employment Law Solicitors, who are acknowledged as leaders in their field by the Legal 500, can swiftly and sensitively advise you if you have a valid discrimination claim under the Equality Act 2010.
We are a diverse, multi-lingual law firm that uses best-in-class technology to provide clients with streamlined, modern, and highly effective employment law advice and representation. Our years of experience in employment law means we have a robust reputation for excellence with the UK’s best Barristers and Queen’s Counsel, Independent Financial Advisers, and Counsellors who can bring additional support to our Employment Law Department if required. Our clients also benefit from our ability to instruct the country’s most respected expert witnesses.
Below are some of the most common questions we are asked about workplace discrimination.
What is workplace discrimination?
The Equality Act 2010 is the governing legislation concerning discrimination. Discrimination happens when a person or a group of people are treated differently due to the fact they possess a particular characteristic or are associated with someone who possesses a particular characteristic. The Equality Act 2010 sets out nine protected characteristics:
- Gender reassignment
- Marriage and civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Religion and belief
- Sexual orientation
It is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against you because you have one or more of these characteristics.
There are five types of discrimination set out in the Equality Act 2010:
- Direct discrimination
- Indirect discrimination
- Instructing, causing, inducing, and helping discrimination
Many Employment Tribunal claims are brought for indirect discrimination. An example of such discrimination is always setting meetings for between 8-9 am or 2.30-4 pm which could be seen as discriminatory to women who have children to drop off and pick up from school.
Can I claim for sexual harassment?
Sexual harassment at work is taken far more seriously thanks to the #MeToo movement. This has given victims more confidence to speak out if they are experiencing unwanted sexual conduct at work.
The Equality Act 2010 states that sexual harassment occurs where:
- A person engages in unwanted conduct of a sexual nature.
- The conduct has the purpose or effect of either violating the victim’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for the victim.
It does not matter if you had a consensual intimate relationship in the past with the person harassing you or whether the harasser is of the same or different sex. Our Employment Law Solicitors have dealt with many sexual harassment claims and know how difficult it can be to discuss what has happened to you. Everything you say will remain confidential between you and your Solicitor unless what you have disclosed is required to prove your claim. Even then, you will be in full control of what is said, and we will explain every aspect of bringing a claim in advance, so you know exactly what to expect.
What if my sexual harasser says their conduct was simply ‘banter’?
The Employment Tribunal will consider the culture of the workplace when deciding whether a person’s behaviour crosses the line from mere banter to harassment. An example of the Tribunal’s approach can be found in Smith v Renrod Ltd ET/1400166/15. The Claimant was employed as a sales executive in a car dealership. She stated that her manager sexually harassed her by attempting to kiss her, pestering her about her private life and making speculative comments about her sex life and relationship with her boyfriend who also worked at the dealership. The Employment Tribunal concluded that although there was a workplace culture of sexual banter that both the Claimant and her manager participated in and the Claimant was fairly robust, the manager’s comments and conduct went beyond what was acceptable to her.
Why choose us?
We have successfully advised and represented senior executives, professionals, and highly skilled workers on discrimination claims and are experienced in working in a wide range of industries, including manufacturing, retail, finance, law, medicine, academia, and technology. Our results-driven Employment Law Solicitors will spend time understanding what you want to achieve and work tirelessly to procure it. We understand the sensitive nature of discrimination claims, therefore you can trust our advice will be delivered in a compassionate, straightforward manner.
People choose and recommend us because we care about them and their future career prospects. We are focused on results and achieving them in the quickest, most cost-effective way possible. Our Employment Law Solicitors will take care of your legal concerns so you can focus on your future.
To talk to us about a workplace discrimination claim, please contact us using the form below.
Meet your 'Discrimination' specialists
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Depending upon the complexity we are able to offer fixed fees in some cases. In other cases our solicitors chargethe following hourly rate:
- Partner/Member SolicitorHourly rate of £250 + VAT
- Senior Solicitor or Head of Dept: (PQE 8yr+)Hourly rate of £225 + VAT
- Assistant Solicitor/Fee Earner (PQE 3/7yr)Hourly rate of £200 + VAT
- Newly Qualified Fee Earner (PQE 1/3yr)Hourly rate of £170 + VAT
- Paralegals/TraineesHourly rate of £120 + VAT
- Support ParalegalsHourly rate of £100 + VAT