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Increase in discrimination injury to feelings awards from 6 April 2018

Individuals who bring successful discrimination claims are entitled to be compensated for the upset and hurt they have suffered by way of an injury to feelings award. These awards are separate from, and in addition to, awards to compensate for financial loss and can be made even where no financial loss has been suffered.

Awards for injury to feelings will increase for all claims presented on or after 6 April 2018.

The new bands are as follows:

  • Lower band suitable for one-off and isolated incidents which are considered to be less serious - £900 to £8,600

  • Middle band suitable for cases that do not merit an award in the upper band - £8,600 to £25,700

  • Upper band suitable only in the most serious cases which was where there has been a lengthy campaign of harassment - £25,700 to £42,900, with the most exceptional cases capable of exceeding £42,900.

These rates were substantially increased last year for claims presented from 11 September 2017. These increases are more modest and reflect changes in the Retail Price Index.

It is worth remembering that a claimant does not need to prove that they have suffered any ill health or produce medical evidence in order to get an injury to feelings award – although if they do they may get a higher figure.

The tribunal will consider the extent to which the victim of discrimination has had their feelings injured and will attribute a financial value to that injury. Awards in the upper band are rare (most awards are in the upper lower and middle bands) but even these can now amount to a considerable cost to an organisation.

Published: April 2018

Employment Law Update - April 2018

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Melanie Stancliffe