If you have been dismissed from your employment, or unfairly dismissed, or your employment has been terminated unfairly in some other way, you may be able to bring a claim before an Employment Tribunal in the UK. Here is some things that you should know before you decide whether you have a valid claim.

Bringing a claim before an Employment Tribunal can be a daunting experience for most people, and particularly for anyone who is left to handle the claim on their own. This handy little article provides 5 important tips for helping you to prepare and lodge your claim before an Employment Tribunal in the UK, to help you get started with this oftentimes complex process.

1. Make sure you know what your rights are and what type of claim you are bringing: If you don’t know your rights, you should firstly seek out some free legal advice if you do not qualify for legal aid and have no funds to employ solicitors. The Justice website contains information on the types of claims and the appropriate legislation that applies, and citizen’s advice can provide free advice even if they cannot bring the claim on your behalf.

2. If you have been dismissed, make sure you know the exact date when you were dismissed: The day your employment ended is crucially important, so make sure you calculate it properly. The date your employment ended is known as the Effective date of Termination (EDT), and will assist in calculating the last date for lodging your claim, which in most cases is 3 months from the EDT. Be sure to take account of any periods of notice that may apply to your situation.

3. Make sure you submit your claim on the proper claim form, known as an ET1 form, and include all relevant information. This form is freely available from the ET section at Justice.gov

4. If your claim is accepted, make sure to set out a plan of action as to how you will prepare your case and any evidence or documents that you may need to help you prove your claim. The plan of action should include any relevant dates (such as a hearing or pre-hearing review) and how long you have left for these important dates.

5. If you have difficulty obtaining evidence or witness statements, you can ask the Tribunal to issue an order against anyone you believe has evidence you need – and for them to supply that evidence; or who could testify on your behalf, and for them to attend to give testimony.

These handy starter tips are just a few helpful pieces of guidance to help you on your way. If you need more information or guidance there are many websites out there which provide information and guides on bringing a claim before the Employment Tribunal.