An employment lawyer at one of the region’s largest law firms has warned that business owners should be aware that due to a rise in the Retail Prices Index (RPI) the increase to the statutory limit on certain employment tribunal awards is higher than usual this year.

The increased limits will apply to compensation or other payment which arises as the result of an event occurring on or after 6 April 2023.

“From 6 April 2023 the new limits take the maximum amount of a week’s pay used to calculate redundancy pay from £571 to £643”, says James Denton, a solicitor with GHP Legal that has offices in Oswestry, Llangollen and Wrexham.

“Key to note is the increase in the amount of the compensatory award for unfair dismissal, which has risen from a maximum of £93,878 to £105,707. The minimum basic award for certain unfair dismissals, including health and safety dismissals, has increased from £6,959 to £7,836.

“The Vento bands, which provide guidance for employment tribunals when deciding awards for injury to feelings in discrimination claims, will also increase in respect of claims presented on or after 6 April 2023.

“The Vento Lower band (less serious cases) of £990 – £9,900 rises to £1,100 – £11,200. The Middle band (cases that do not merit an award in the upper band) of £9,900 – £29,600 rises to £11,200 – £33,700. The Upper band (the most serious cases) of £29,600 – £49,300 rises to £33,700 – £56,200. The most exceptional cases are however capable of exceeding an award of £56,200.

“On top of the aforementioned there are also other rates increases from 1st, 2nd and 6th April, in respect of the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage, Statutory Maternity, Adoption, Paternity and Parental Bereavement pay, and Statutory Sick Pay.

“Employers are currently facing a tough time financially, and we anticipate there will be a rise this year in the number of businesses needing assistance with making redundancies, and the number of individuals seeking help with unfair dismissal claims. We would therefore advise that people seek early legal advice.

James Denton, Employment solicitor at GHP Legal.