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Discrimination: increases to injury to feelings awards 2023

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, compensatory awards for financial loss which are uncapped.

In 2002 the Court of Appeal set out three bands for injury to feelings awards, which became known as the “Vento” bands after the name of the case which established them. At that time the lowest award was £500 and the highest £25,000.

Awards for injury to feelings have been increased for all claims presented on or after 6 April 2023 and are now over double the original rates.

The new bands are as follows:

Lower band suitable for one-off and isolated incidents which are considered to be less serious

£1,100 to £11,200

Middle band suitable for cases that do not merit an award in the upper band

£11,200 to £33,700

Upper band suitable only in the most serious cases which was where there has been a lengthy campaign of harassment

£33,700 to £56,200 with the most exceptional cases capable of exceeding £56,200

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 and most awards are in the upper lower and middle bands.  

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