Appealing against an employment tribunal judgment

Employment tribunal

You may only appeal to the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) on a .

Broadly, a point of law is one which concerns the interpretation of the legislation and its application to the facts of the case.

Where the employment tribunal has made findings of fact based on the evidence it has read or heard, eg where the tribunal sets out what they believed actually happened, or why someone acted as they did, you cannot challenge this – even if you think that the tribunal was wrong to make those findings.

As well as appeals against judgments, appeals to the EAT can also be made against Interim decisions, directions or orders made by an employment tribunal. An appeal to the EAT may therefore be made where, for example, the tribunal has granted or refused to grant a witness order, a postponement or deadline extension.

In order for the EAT to accept your notice of appeal (EAT Form 1), you must ensure that you:

  • give full details of why you think there are grounds for appeal
  • enclose a copy of the claim (form ET1), response (form ET3), judgment and written reasons

If you have also applied to the employment tribunal for a review, you should also enclose a copy of the review application, judgment and written reasons. If the review judgment is awaited then you should say so.

If you believe that an employment tribunal judgment, decision, direction or order made during the proceedings is wrong, you should not wait until the final judgment (or the outcome of a review) to lodge an appeal.

Note that the employment tribunal normally destroys files within one year of sending the judgment to the parties involved.

If the notice of appeal is rejected

If your appeal application is incomplete and/or received without the correct supporting documentation, the EAT will regard it as not properly instituted.

In these circumstances:

  • they will write to you explaining what is missing and what you still need to do
  • the 42-day time limit remains, so you should comply with the request made by EAT within that limit

If the notice of appeal is accepted as properly instituted

If you provide all the required documents, or explanations for their absence, then the EAT will tell the other party (or parties) that you have appealed.

However, some time may elapse before they are asked to respond.

The EAT will first consider whether the appeal has any reasonable prospect of success.

Responding to a cross appeal

If the claimant – or one of the other respondents if there was more than one – cross appeals, you must lodge and serve a reply.

This must take place within 14 days of receiving the cross-appeal – unless otherwise directed.

You can download the cross appeal reply form from the Tribunals Service website (PDF, 5K). – Opens in a new window