Does the Simmons v Castle 10% uplift apply to employment tribunal awards for injury to feelings?

by Laurie Anstis on February 27, 2015

As part of the Jackson reforms of civil litigation, in October 2012 the Court of Appeal announced in the case of Simmons v Castle that awards of general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity were to be increased by 10%.

At the time I suggested that this could also apply to employment tribunal awards for injury to feelings, and thereby raise the so-called “Vento bands“. The Court of Appeal later revised their judgment, and it seemed to me that this revision made it even more likely that the judgment applied in the employment tribunal.

Since then,┬áthe Presidential Guidance on case management issued last year took it as uncontentious that the judgment applied (“remedy”, para 14), and the EAT has held:

HHJ Eady QC – it does apply,

Simler J – it does apply

last month – HHJ Serota QC – it doesn’t apply

and this week (Slade J) – it doesn’t apply.

The note of the judgment of HHJ Serota QC suggests that leave had been given to the appeal to the Court of Appeal in that case, and it is to be hoped that the point will be resolved there. Until resolved by the Court of Appeal, the whole point is now open for argument in the Employment Tribunal.