Our pricing for claims for unfair or wrongful dismissal

Indicative costs for bringing and defending claims for unfair dismissal or wrongful dismissal are as follows

Simple case: £5,000-£8,000 (excluding VAT)

Medium complexity case: £8,000-£13,000 (excluding VAT)

High complexity case: £13,000-£26,000 (excluding VAT)

For straightforward cases we may agree to charge a fixed fee. However, in most cases it is difficult to estimate when a case may be concluded. We will provide estimates based on hourly rates.

The hourly rates for employment litigation work are dependent upon the seniority of the lawyers handling your case. Our team of experienced solicitors includes

Team Member                                                         Year qualified        Hourly rate

Sharon Needle, Director and Managing Partner           1998                        £300

David Hill, Director                                                      1978                  £250

Naomi Duxbury-Tetley, Managing Associate                 2010                      £220

Thomas Taylor, Associate                                               2017                    £150

Christopher Thomas Associate                                       2018                    £150

Kate Imeson, Trainee Solicitor                                                               £95

Factors that could make a case more complex:

  • There is more than one Claimant or Respondent.

  • If it is necessary to make or defend applications to amend claims or to provide further information about an existing claim

  • Defending claims that are brought by litigants in person

  • Making or defending a costs application

  • Complex preliminary issues such as whether the claimant is disabled (if this is not agreed by the parties)

  • The number of witnesses and documents

  • If it is an automatic unfair dismissal claim, for example if a claimant has been dismissed after making a protected disclosure (blowing the whistle) or for a reason related to their membership of a trade union.

  • Where there are allegations of discrimination which are linked to the dismissal

If your claim does not settle, there will be an additional charge for attending a Tribunal Hearing of between £750 and £2,500 per day (excluding VAT). A simple case will normally last up to 2 days. Medium and high complexity cases will normally last at least 3 days.


Disbursements are costs related to your case that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Counsel's fees estimated between £185 to £300 per hour (depending on experience of the advocate) for attending a Tribunal Hearing (including preparation)

Key stages - The work Needle Partners will carry out

The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:

  • Taking your initial instructions, reviewing the papers and advising you on merits and likely compensation (this is likely to be revisited throughout the matter and subject to change)

  • Entering into pre-claim conciliation where this is mandatory to explore whether a settlement can be reached;

  • Preparing claim or response

  • Reviewing and advising on claim or response from other party

  • Exploring settlement and negotiating settlement throughout the process

  • Preparing or considering a schedule of loss

  • Preparing for (and attending) a Preliminary Hearing

  • Exchanging documents with the other party and agreeing a bundle of documents

  • Taking witness statements, drafting statements and agreeing their content with witnesses

  • Preparing bundle of documents

  • Reviewing and advising on the other party's witness statements

  • Agreeing a list of issues, a chronology and/or cast list

  • Preparation and attendance at Final Hearing, including instructions to Counsel

The stages set out above are an indication of all the work that may be required if a case is not settled and a hearing is required. If the case is settled and some of stages are not required, the indicative fee may be reduced. You may wish to handle the claim yourself and only have our advice in relation to some of the stages. This can also be arranged to suit your individual needs.

How long will my matter take?

The time that it takes from taking your initial instructions to the final resolution of your matter depends largely on the stage at which your case is resolved. If a settlement is reached during pre-claim conciliation, your case is likely to take 2-6 weeks. If your claim proceeds to a Final Hearing, your case is likely to take 4-12 months. This is just an estimate and we will of course be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have more information and as the matter progresses.