Employment Tribunal Time Limits

The following table provides an outline guide to employment tribunal time limits, as applicable under key pieces of legislation.

Note that time limit extensions may in some cases be allowable under the relevant legislation, for example where the requirement for ACAS early conciliation applies or the tribunal considers an extension to be ‘just and equitable’. Take professional advice to confirm the time limit applicable to the specific circumstances.

Employment tribunal time limits

LEGISLATIONTIME LIMIT
Employment Rights Act 1996
Written statement of terms of employment3 months beginning with date on which employment ceased
Itemised pay statement3 months beginning with date on which employment ceased
Unauthorised deductions from wages3 months beginning with date of payment of wages from which deduction was made or date when payment received by employer
Guarantee payments3 months beginning with date when payment was payable
Detriment relating to jury service, health and safety, Sunday working, working time, protected disclosure, duties of occupational pension trustee, functions of employee representative, leave for family or domestic reasons, flexible working, study or training, employee shareholder status, tax credits3 months beginning with date of act or failure
Time off for public duties3 months from date of employer’s failure to allow time off
Time off for employee to look for work, etc3 months beginning with date when time off should have been allowed
Time off for antenatal care3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off for antenatal care (agency workers)3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off to accompany to antenatal appointment3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off to accompany to antenatal appointment (agency workers)3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off for adoption appointments3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off to attend adoption meetings (agency workers)3 months beginning with date of appointment
Time off for dependants3 months beginning with date when failure occurred
Time off for pension scheme trustees3 months beginning with date of employer’s failure to allow time off
Time off for employee representatives3 months beginning with date when time off should have been allowed or day taken off
Time off for young persons for study or training and right to remuneration3 months beginning with date when time off was taken or should have been allowed
Suspension from work on medical, or maternity, grounds3 months beginning with first day of suspension
Agency workers: right to remuneration where the supply of an agency worker to a hirer is ended on maternity grounds3 months beginning with the day on which the supply of the agency worker to a hirer was ended on maternity grounds
Agency workers: right to offer of being proposed for alternative work where the supply of an agency worker to a hirer is ended on maternity grounds and the temporary work agency has available suitable alternative work3 months beginning with the day on which the supply of the agency worker to a hirer was ended on maternity grounds
Parental leave3 months beginning with date of matters complained of
Flexible working3 months beginning with relevant date
Written statement of reasons for dismissal3 months beginning with effective date of termination of employment
Unfair dismissal3 months beginning with effective date of termination of employment
Interim relief7 days immediately following the effective date of termination of employment
Redundancy payment6 months beginning with relevant date
Insolvent employer: claims against Secretary of State (redundancy payment)No time limit specified
Payments equivalent to redundancy payments to civil servants etcNo time limit specified
Insolvent employer: claims against Secretary of State (employer’s debts)3 months beginning with date of communication of Secretary of State’s decision
Equality Act 2010
Complaint relating to prohibited conduct (discrimination, victimisation, harassment)3 months starting with the date of the act to which the complaint relates
Complaint relating to breach of an equality clause or rule6 months beginning with the last day of the employment in a standard case (note that different dates apply in concealment, incapacity and stable work cases
Equality Act 2006
Claim by Equality and Human Rights Commission under s 25(3)(a) (enforcement of provisions relating to discriminatory advertisements, instructions and pressure to discriminate)6 months beginning with the date (or last date) on which the alleged unlawful act occurred
Appeal against unlawful act notice6 weeks beginning with the day on which the notice is given
National Minimum Wage Act 1998
Failure to allow access to records3 months following end of 14 days from receipt of production notice
Detriment relating to enforcement of rights etc3 months beginning with date of act or failure
Appeal against enforcement notice4 weeks following date of service of notice
Appeal against penalty notice4 weeks following date of service of notice
Flexible Working Regulations 2002
Failure or threat to fail to comply with right to be accompanied at meeting to discuss contract variation, or an appeal3 months beginning with date of failure or threat
Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations (TUPE) 2006
Failure to inform or consult in respect of transfer of undertaking3 months beginning with date of completion of transfer
Claim by employee for compensation where order made by tribunal under reg 15(7) or reg 15(8)3 months beginning with date of tribunal’s order
Failure to notify employee liability information3 months beginning with the date of the relevant transfer
Employment Relations Act 1999
Failure or threat to fail to comply with right to be accompanied at a disciplinary or grievance hearing3 months beginning with date of failure or threat
Part-time Workers Regulations 2000
Less favourable treatment and detriment relating to part-time workers3 months beginning with (last) date of less favourable treatment or detriment (or six months in case of claim by member of armed forces)
Fixed-term Employees Regulations 2002
Less favourable treatment and detriment relating to fixed-term employees3 months beginning with (last) date of less favourable treatment
Working Time Regulations 1998
Refusal to permit exercise of rights or failure to make payments in respect of annual leave3 months beginning with date when exercise of right should have been permitted or date when payment was payable (or 6 months in case of claim by member of armed forces)
Merchant Shipping (Maritime Labour Convention) (Hours of Work) Regulations 2018
Refusal to permit the seafarer to exercise his right to annual and additional leave, or failure to pay any sums due in respect of leave3 months beginning with the date of failure
Merchant Shipping (Working Time: Inland Waterways) Regulations 2004
Refusal to permit exercise of right to adequate rest or annual leave or failure to make payments in respect of annual leave3 months beginning with date when exercise of right should have been permitted or date when payment was payable
Civil Aviation (Working Time) Regulations 2004
Claims relating to annual leave, health assessments and organising patterns of work3 months of date right should have been permitted or leave should have been permitted to begin
Information and Consultation of Employees Regulations 2004
Time off for information and consultation representatives etc3 months beginning with date when time off was taken or should have been permitted
Detriment relating to information and consultation representatives etc3 months beginning with date of act or failure
Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations 1977
Right of safety representatives to time off and pay3 months of date of failure
Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 (TULR(C)A)
Unjustifiable disciplining of trade union members3 months beginning with date of infringement
Claim for compensation where tribunal has made declaration of unjustifiable disciplining of trade union membersNot earlier than 4 weeks beginning with date of declaration nor later than 6 months beginning with that date
Unauthorised deduction of union subscriptions3 months beginning with date of deduction
Failure to comply with collective bargaining obligations regarding training3 months beginning with date of failure
Wrongful deduction of political fund contributions or refusal to deduct union duesThree months beginning with date of payment of emoluments
Employer’s failure to comply with order under s 87(5)Not earlier than four weeks beginning with date of order nor later than six months beginning with that date
Refusal of employment on grounds of trade union membership3 months beginning with date of conduct complained of
Refusal of service of employment agency on grounds of trade union membership3 months beginning with date of conduct complained of
Inducements relating to trade union membership or activities3 months beginning with date of offer
Inducements relating to collective bargaining3 months beginning with date of offer
Trade union membership and activities (detriment short of dismissal)3 months beginning with date of last act or failure
Interim relief pending determination of claim of unfair dismissal7 days immediately following the effective date of termination
Time off for trade union duties and activities3 months from date of employer’s failure to give time off or pay compensation
Exclusion or expulsion from trade unionsix months beginning with date of refusal or expulsion
Claim for compensation where tribunal has made declaration of exclusion or expulsion from trade unionNot earlier than 4 weeks beginning with date of declaration nor later than 6 months beginning with that date
Failure to consult in respect of redundancies3 months beginning with date on which dismissal takes effect
Claim for remuneration under protective award3 months beginning with date of failure to pay
Unfair dismissal under s 238 (failure to offer re-engagement where dismissal connected with lockout, strike or other industrial action)6 months beginning with complainant’s date of dismissal

 

Detriment short of dismissal relating to collective bargaining rights3 months beginning with date of act or failure
Pension Schemes Act 1993
Insolvent employer: unpaid contributions to occupational pension scheme3 months beginning with date of communication of Secretary of State’s decision
ET Extension of Jurisdiction Order 1994
Employee’s contract claim3 months beginning with effective date of termination of employment or last working day
Employer’s contract claim6 weeks beginning with date of receipt of employee’s claim NB. the ET Rules require the counterclaim to be submitted on the ET3 form, ie within 28 days of the date that the copy of the claim form was sent by the tribunal to the employer
Health and Safety (Consultation with Employees) Regulations 1996
Time off for employee safety representatives and candidates3 months of the date when the failure occurred
Occupational and Personal Pension Schemes (Consultation by Employers and Miscellaneous Amendment) Regulations 2006
Time off for consultation representatives, etc3 months beginning with the day on which the time off was taken or on which it is alleged the time off should have been permitted
Pay for time off to act as consultation representative3 months beginning with the day on which the time off was taken, or on which it is alleged the time off should have been permitted
Unfair dismissal for reasons relating to acting or seeking to act as consultation representative, enforce right under the regulations or make complaint to regulator3 months beginning with effective date of termination
Detriment in employment for reasons relating to acting or seeking to act as consultation representative, enforce right under the regulations or make complaint to regulator3 months beginning with the date of the act or omission complained of
Pensions Act 2008
Detriment for a reason relating to rights in relation to pension auto-enrolment3 months beginning with the date of the act or omission complained of
Unfair dismissal for a for a reason relating to rights in relation to pension auto-enrolment3 months beginning with effective date of termination
Agency Workers Regulations 2010
Detriment for a reason relating to rights in relation to agency workers3 months beginning with the date of the act or omission complained of
Unfair dismissal for a reason relating to rights in relation to agency workers3 months beginning with effective date of termination
Breach of a permanent contract providing for pay between assignments3 months beginning with the date of the breach
Employee Study and Training (Procedural Requirements) Regulations 2010
Right to be accompanied at relevant meetings3 months beginning with the date of the failure to comply or threat to fail to comply
Employment Relations Act 1999 (Blacklists) Regulations 2010
Refusal of employment for a reason that related to a prohibited list3 months beginning with the date of the conduct to which the complaint relates
Detriment for a reason which relates to a prohibited list3 months beginning with the date of the act or failure to which the complaint relates
Unfair dismissal for a reason which relates to a prohibited list3 months beginning with effective date of termination
Exclusivity Terms in Zero Hours Contracts (Redress) Regulations 2015
Detriment suffered because worker has breached an unlawful exclusivity term in a zero hours contract3 months beginning with the date of the act or failure to act to which the complaint relates or, where that act or failure is part of a series of similar acts or failures, the last of them
Posted Workers (Enforcement of Employment Rights) Regulations 2016
Unauthorised deduction from the wages of a posted worker in the construction sector by a contractor3 months beginning with the date of payment of the relevant wages from which the deduction was made
Employment Rights Act 1996 (NHS Recruitment—Protected Disclosure) Regulations 2018
Discrimination because it appears to the National Health Service employer that the applicant has made a protected disclosure3 months beginning with the date of the act or failure to which the complaint relates NB EC requirement applies, but there is no corresponding statutory extension of time limit to facilitate conciliation

Legal disclaimer

The matters contained in this article are intended to be for general information purposes only. This article does not constitute legal advice, nor is it a complete or authoritative statement of the law, and should not be treated as such. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that the information is correct, no warranty, express or implied, is given as to its accuracy and no liability is accepted for any error or omission. Before acting on any of the information contained herein, expert legal advice should be sought.

Employment Tribunal Time Limits 2
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