Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

This is a case concerning the (in)ability of Claimants to run concurrent proceedings in the High Court and the Employment Tribunal. Such issues usually crop up when a contractual claim for a value above £25,000 (which should be issued in the High Court) runs alongside a complaint in the Employment Tribunal for redress of a violation of a worker or employees rights (such as discrimination or unfair dismissal).

The facts in Halstead v Paymentshield Group Holdings Ltd

Mr Halstead (“the Appellant”) issued proceedings in the Employment Tribunal  for the complaints of unfair dismissal, automatic unfair dismissal on the ground of making a protected disclosure, and for accrued but untaken holiday pay. The Claimant had outstanding contractual claims that would need to be issued in the High Court (for breach of contract and rescission) and sent a pre-action letter to the Respondent regarding this on 7 December 2010. The Respondent applied to have the Employment Tribunal claim stayed on 21 December 2010 on the basis that there were likely to be concurrent proceedings in the High Court and the Employment Tribunal (although this was not the case). The Employment Judge agreed to the stay. The Appellant in March 2011 applied for the stay to be lifted because of a change in his financial circumstances and was apparently ordered to undertake to not bring High Court proceedings along with the Employment Tribunal proceedings. This was appealed to the Employment Appeal Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal ordered a stay on proceedings due to the potential concurrent claims (stating that the pre-action letter could constitute proceedings). A further appeal was made to the Court of Appeal by the Appellant.

The law relating to concurrent proceedings and staying Employment Tribunal claims

If there is the possibility of concurrent Employment Tribunal and civil proceedings then whether the Employment Tribunal claim or the civil claim should be stayed depends upon the facts of the matter. In complex cases, civil proceedings are likely to take precedence and the Employment Tribunal proceedings will be stayed. Further, should there be a significant overlap between Tribunal and court proceedings it is appropriate to stay the Employment Tribunal claim (Mindimaxnox LLP v Gover).

The Court of Appeal’s judgment in Halstead v Paymentshield Group Holdings Ltd

The Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, overturning the Employment Appeal Tribunal’s judgment. The critical points in this decision were firstly, that the Appellant was not issuing concurrent claims as the claims were separate and, secondly, that a pre-action letter and a draft particulars of claim did not constitute proceedings. It was therefore not appropriate for the Appellant’s claim to be stayed in the Employment Tribunal.

Our specialist employment lawyers’ thoughts on Halstead v Paymentshield Group Holdings Ltd

This is an interesting case concerning employment law proceedings in the Employment Tribunal. Claimants with potentially high-value contractual disputes should be aware that there is a cap on contractual damages in the High Court and that problems may arise if they issue claims that overlap in the High Court and Employment Tribunal. However, a pre-action letter and particulars of claim sent to the (potential) Defendant does not constitute proceedings.

 

About Chris Hadrill

Chris is a specialist employment lawyer at Redmans. He specialises in contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including breach of contract claims, compromise agreements and Employment Tribunal cases. He writes on employment law matters on a variety of websites, including Direct 2 Lawyers, Lawontheweb.co.uk, LegalVoice, the Justice Gap and his own blog. Contact Chris by emailing him at chadrill@redmans.co.uk

Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

Share →

Our awards

Request a callback

Your name

Your email

Your telephone number

Contact us

Please feel free to discuss your own position and concerns. Contact your nearest office on:

T: 020 3397 3603
E: enquiries@redmans.co.uk
W: www.redmans.co.uk

Testimonials

4.78 Average

138 Reviews

Richard O

Chris at Redmans is my go-to legal expert when it comes to employee-related matters. His depth of knowledge, experience and considered approach to problems and their solutions is highly valuable. I cannot recommend Redmans highly enough.

Posted 2 days ago

Rory Y

They provide me with timely and clear advice!

Posted 2 days ago

Steven C

Redmans handled my settlement with my employer quickly, decisively and to a standard that I was very happy with. I would in similar circumstances contract them again

Posted 2 days ago

Deepthi K

Transparent. Clear communication. Prompt reply’s. Saves lot of time. Very satisfied.

Posted 2 days ago

Anonymous

Chris and Sacha did a fantastic job and negotiated a significant better settlement agreement

Posted 2 days ago

Dino D

I did get a very swift and god service from Redmans

Posted 2 days ago

Stephanie H

Clear, prompt, effective support from Chris which has been very much appreciated. Thank you again.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

I would highly recommend Redmans Solicitors, the team were very friendly and my case was dealt with professionally and efficiently. Thank you!

Posted 1 month ago

Shane M

Very professional, welcome advice at a crucial time. Always available and reasonable cost.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

My case was relatively straight-forward. But even so, working with Redmans was easy, quick, professional & clear. Many thanks

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

The team were very helpful and answered all my questions regarding my redundancy. Initially I had a call with one of the representatives who escalated my request to a suitable employment solicitor. We arranged a call to discuss the settlement and she helped answer all my questions. We then mainly contacted through email which helped resolve the settlement quickly and convently. Thanks for all the help.

Posted 1 month ago

Djaouida T

You have good communication.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Fast and professional. A highly recommended company for employment related issues.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Very professional service.

Posted 1 month ago

Brittany

I was very grateful for Redmans to treat my case with respect and discretion. At the time, I was very new to London and it was meaningful to have someone on my side and win the case for me. Without any doubt, I would definitely recommend Redmans Solicitors to anyone who is in need of it.

Posted 9 months ago

Jake L

Chris is very professional and calm. Very attentive and patient, been a positive experience having Chris represent me, and would recommend him.

Posted 10 months ago

Anonymous

Excellent service. It was a pleasure to work with Chris H, who is brilliant at what he does and very efficient. Their Senior Associate Rana T. is also very knowledgeable and resolves any queries speedily and efficiently. My issue could unfortunately not be resolved, but that was due to my employer and not the firm. Redmans however did all they could. I would definitely recommend them.

Posted 10 months ago

Anonymous

Very pleasant and quick to deal with. Mnay thanks.

Posted 11 months ago

Anonymous

Easy to get hold of. Quick.

Posted 11 months ago

Owen J

Very helpful, efficient service.

Posted 11 months ago

Anonymous

I am very lucky that I worked with Mr. Chris Hadrill and he managed my case very progressively with an analytical approach and trustfully. Of course with a very positive result. I strongly recommend Mr. Hadrill to any one seeking for a successful result from a highly qualified solicitor.

Posted 11 months ago