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Constantine Law — Price Transparency in Unfair Dismissal and Wrongful Dismissal Cases

The Transparency Rules 

We are required by the SRA to provide transparency in relation to the prices we charges individuals and employers in respect of Employment Tribunal claims for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal. The costs information below is provided in accordance with the SRA Transparency Rules and the Law Society’s guidance on Price and Service Transparency.  

Our Team

We are employment law (and regulatory law) specialists in advising individual and corporate clients  with high value and/or complex employment disputes in the Employment Tribunal and High Court. We are a partner led team of six employment law partners (as at 1 January 2023) and four associate/assistant solicitors (and we have over 150 years of experience between us). We provide a personalised and tailored service to all of our clients and each matter is led by a partner or senior lawyer. Our priority is to offer clients a high standard of service in accordance with our core values of clarity, modernity, value and collaboration.


Further details of our highly experienced team of solicitors are available here.

Claims for Unfair Dismissal and Wrongful Dismissal 

We act for both employers and employees.


For individuals, we act on matters where claims for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal are being brought as standalone claims. We carefully assess the merits of bringing a claim and whether it is justified on a cost/benefit analysis. The reason for this is that we seek to ensure that the legal costs associated with bringing claims are justified by the likely outcome: 

  • Unfair dismissal claims attract the statutory cap on compensatory awards (or awards are capped at one year’s salary, if lower).

  • Contractual claims for wrongful dismissal in the Employment Tribunal have a limit of £25,000 on compensation. Higher value wrongful dismissal claims are generally brought in the High Court or County Court, where there is no monetary cap on the claim brought. 


It is therefore important to assess whether the likely outcome will justify the legal costs involved.

For the reasons set out above, it is often the case that we are only instructed to act for individuals bringing claims for unfair dismissal or wrongful dismissal in the Employment Tribunal in combination with other claims such as discrimination, harassment or whistleblowing detriment claims, and where the sums in dispute exceed six figures. 

Our view, based on experience, is that it is generally better and more cost-effective for our clients to resolve contentious matters amicably than ending up in the courts or in the Employment Tribunal. Therefore, the majority of the matters we work on do not proceed all the way to a final hearing.

However, our advice is tailored and strategic. We recognise that for employer clients, on occasion there may be the need to take a stand against individuals bringing nuisance claims by robustly defending such claims. 

Fee Arrangements

We provide flexible pricing structures which can be discussed in advance of us commencing work on a client’s matter, however we charge primarily on a time-spent basis.

Time is recorded in six-minute units and the time spent is then multiplied by our charge-out rates. Our hourly rates vary depending on the seniority of the lawyers engaged, and the complexity and value of the matter.

Our hourly rates range from £175 plus VAT to £450 plus VAT. Our rates are typically lower than those of rival firms because we have eliminated many of the fixed overheads associated with running traditional law firms and we believe in access to justice for all of our clients. Our charge-out rates are reviewed periodically and may be subject to change. Please note that where VAT is charged it will be charged at the rate of 20%, though this may be subject to change.

We notify clients in advance of any changes to our charge out rates. We provide updated costs estimates as the matter progresses.  

Costs for Unfair Dismissal and Wrongful Dismissal Claims

The prices set out below are intended to give a guide to the average cost of bringing or defending unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal claims. They are for indicative purposes and are not intended to be a fixed fee or a final quotation. Each matter will need to be assessed individually, as we need to fully understand the situation and our client’s objectives before a more comprehensive estimate can be provided. Once instructed, we will be able to provide a more precise costs estimate, broken down on a stage-by-stage basis.

  • Bringing a claim for an individual client for unfair dismissal in the Employment Tribunal with a final hearing length of 1 to 3 days may cost in the region of £25,000 to £80,000 plus VAT, including disbursements (see more information on disbursements below).

  • Defending an employer client against a claim for unfair dismissal in the Employment Tribunal with a final hearing length of 1 to 3 days may cost in the region of £65,000 to £95,000 plus VAT, including disbursements.  

  • For the reasons set out above, we are unlikely to bring a standalone claim for wrongful dismissal in the Employment Tribunal. Were we to bring a standalone claim with a hearing length of 1 day, this may cost in the region of £20,000 to £25,000 plus VAT, including disbursements. 

  • Defending a standalone wrongful dismissal claim with a hearing length of 1 day may cost in the region of £25,000 to £35,000 plus VAT, including disbursements.

All of our costs estimates are clearly set out in our terms of business to our clients and/or in regular email updates, which may stand as a variation to our terms of business and/or the provision of regular Work In Progress (WIP) guides which can be provided to our clients on request at any time.

Where possible, we seek to agree our costs with our clients and we have very few bad debts and/or fee disputes when compared to the UK legal market as a whole. Our “lock-up” is less than 50% of the UK legal average (“lock-up” being the combined total of WIP + unpaid invoices).

For the avoidance of doubt, the above estimates do not include costs for other claims which are usually brought alongside unfair dismissal or wrongful dismissal claims, such as discrimination, harassment or whistleblowing detriment claims.


Litigation is a reactive process and there are many factors which can affect the overall costs involved in bringing or defending claims for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal. Factors that could make such a case more complex and as a result, increase the total cost for a client include the following:

  • the factual and legal complexity.

  • the value of the case.

  • the amount of documentation.

  • the strategy adopted by the client and the other party/parties.

  • the approach to settlement, including whether a mediation is held, whether there are protracted settlement discussions and detailed negotiation of settlement terms and how far into the proceedings any settlement is reached. 

  • the level of support the client requires throughout.

  • making or defending applications (including applications for specific disclosure and costs applications).

  • the number of witnesses called.

  • defending claims that are brought by litigants in person.

  • whether there are multiple claimants and/or respondents.

  • whether territorial jurisdiction issues are involved.

  • whether there is a foreign element to the claim.

  • the length of the hearing.

  • the cost of counsel’s fees.

  • whether an appeal is brought.

  • the seniority of the lawyers engaged (including counsel).

The pricing set out above is intended to cover the following key stages and services:

  • taking initial client instructions.

  • reviewing key documents.

  • advising on merits and the likely value of the claims (which will be kept under review and are subject to change).

  • the ACAS early conciliation process.

  • drafting the claim or defence (often with the input of counsel).

  • reviewing the other side’s claim or defence.

  • preparing for and attending a preliminary hearing.

  • disclosure of documents and reviewing disclosure documents.

  • preparing witness statements and reviewing the other side’s witness statements.

  • preparing a schedule of loss or counter schedule of loss.

  • preparing a bundle of documents (usually prepared by the employer).

  • preparation for and attendance at the final hearing, including instructing counsel.

The pricing set out above does not cover unexpected and/or protracted inter-party correspondence (which we would seek to avoid) or other additional work such as preparing applications, for example for specific disclosure. 


Disbursements are costs associated with a client’s matter that are payable to third parties. This includes disbursements in connection with volume photocopying, printing, courier fees, travel expenses, counsel’s fees, expert’s fees and foreign lawyers’ fees.

The cost of any likely disbursements will vary depending on a number of factors. For example, counsel’s fees for a hearing will vary depending on the length of time the hearing is listed for and based on counsel’s experience.

For ease, we typically incur disbursements on our client’s behalf. We seek to agree with the client in advance before disbursements are incurred.


Employment Tribunal proceedings for unfair dismissal and wrongful dismissal generally last, in our experience, between 12 and 24 months. This is for the time between issuing the initial claim and the parties receiving the Employment Tribunal’s judgment, albeit the case can be resolved at any time in between by way of a mutually agreed settlement.

The above is an indicative guide only. The actual timeframes involved will vary subject to the directions set by the Employment Tribunal, Employment Tribunal availability, in addition to the availability of the parties and their respective counsel to attend a hearing. We provide clients with more accurate timeframes once we have additional information and as the matter progresses.

Instructing Us and Complaints

We are committed to providing a high quality of service and client care. We sincerely hope that our clients are happy with the service we provide and will recommend Constantine Law to their contacts. 

If a client is unhappy about any aspect of the service they receive or about our fees, we operate a formal complaints procedure which can be viewed here.

If you are interested in instructing Constantine Law, please contact us using the details set out here.

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