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£550,000 costs award against claimant

In the case of Radia v Jefferies International Limited the Clamant was unsuccessful in his claims for disability discrimination.  Following assessment, he was ordered to pay £550,000 to the Respondent in respect of their legal costs (which actually totalled around £700,000 but the Respondent capped these at £550,000).

The costs award was made on several grounds including that the Claimant had acted unreasonably by giving misleading and untrue evidence and that his complaints had no reasonable prospects of success and, as such, he had been unreasonable in bringing the claim (or continuing with it after receipt of a clear cost warning from the Respondent).

Claimant had acted unreasonably

Whilst costs are not awarded automatically in Employment Tribunal cases, this case is a reminder to parties that they can still be made and that they can be substantial!  The fact that an insurer had backed the claim did not prevent costs being awarded.  It was also relevant in this case that the Claimant had been acting tactically during his employment by sitting on serious allegations and deploying them when he considered it in his interests to do so many years later.

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