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Employment Tribunals: Counter Claims

It is possible for an employer to submit a counter claim for breach of contract against an employee who has already submitted a breach of contract claim if they have suffered a loss through the employee’s failure to observe the terms of their contract of employment.

An employee can submit a breach of contract claim to an Employment Tribunal if they suffer a loss through failure of their employer to observe the terms of their contract of employment. The claim must arise out of a contract of employment or be outstanding on the termination of the employee’s employment.

A breach of contract employee claim and employer counter claim to an Employment Tribunal must not relate to personal injury, a term imposing an obligation of confidence, a term which is a covenant in restraints of trade, a term relating to intellectual property, or a term either requiring an employer to provide the employee with living accommodation or imposing a duty relating to the provision of living accommodation.

Employers can only submit a counter claim for breach of contract if the employee first submits their breach of contract claim. An employee has three months after the date of their termination of employment to make a breach-of-contract claim to an Employment Tribunal.

The employer can make a counter claim at any time up to six weeks after receiving a copy of the employee’s original application (ET1 form). If an employer wishes to raise a claim against an employee for breach of contract where the employee has not submitted a claim then the employer can bring their claim to the Civil Courts and the time limit for this is six years after the breach of contract occurred.

If you would like advice regarding a particular breach of contract issue then give us a call.

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