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Any ET judges /panel members

(13 Posts)
Dana28 Fri 17-May-19 21:34:18

After spending days tepresenting myself in an ET., I can categorically say it has been one of the worst experiences of my life.
The other side turned up with a barrister solicitor and 4 other people, I was all on my own. Their barrister wrongfooted me at every turn - last minute witnesses, delaying handing over stuff to Me and judge did absolutely nothing. Solicitor smirking, their witness observers putting themselves right in my line of sight
pulling dis believing faces while I was being cross questioned. I had tk cope with asking and answering questions, listening and remembering what was said, juggliing paperwork whilst trying to think and run my case. It was exhausting and in the afternoons I was exhausted. And could t concentrate couldn't find my list of questions so just had to go from the witness statement. I was wrong about some points of law. On the last day didn't get a break in 4 hours. By the time I had to sum up I scarcely knew if I was coming or going and accidentally mixed up events which contradicted my evidence given under iath and destroyed a lot of my case.
I am obvs going to lose but now I am worried I have accixentally committed perjury and will have to pay costs. The judge was really irritated when I couldn't find pages etc

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Chocolate50 Fri 17-May-19 22:03:44

I'm so sorry you had to go through this. On what grounds did you go to court on? Just wondering if The Law Society could help you appeal if you have grounds.
I'm not a judge or magistrate or legal person I just didn't want to ignore.

neverknowinglynormal Sat 18-May-19 17:44:27

Poor you. I can't imagine how hard it must have been to represent yourself; I had a barrister and found it hard enough.

I honestly don't think it's very usual to have costs awarded against you for accidentally getting stuff wrong while stressed. If they tried, you could point out their failings with late disclosure etc

I also think that how someone "performs" is taken into account but more so the written evidence. I have seen things go both ways but it all comes down to what can be proved not how easily you could find a document

Hope it turns out better than you expect

smithyssister Sat 18-May-19 17:56:06

Not a judge or panel member but my job means I've attended many ETs in various guises. What were you claiming?

Firstly, you were on the back foot before you started. Most cases that reach tribunal (many are settled) are lost or won but with pocket deductions so there's no compensation awarded. Some claims are easier to defend that others.

If you were wrong in a couple of points of law and not clear in your testimony you are probably right that the tribunal won't rule in your favour. However, don't be worried about the judge being irritated with paper faffing- this is normal.

It is unusual for a defendant to be awarded costs- the judge would need to be convinced that your claim was deliberately vexatious.

It may be worth asking the other side to settle now and seeing if they offer a nominal sum although it's late in the day- they might consider that they have already paid out legal costs and barrister's attendance and therefore it's not worth it or they might figure a couple of thousand eliminates risk of any appeal.

You can't appeal on the grounds that you didn't have a solicitor and they had better counsel.

HermioneWeasley Sat 18-May-19 17:59:42

You are very unlikely to have costs awarded against you, so don’t worry on that count.

Employment tribunals are supposed to help unrepresented parties, even to the extent of asking witnesses questions that a barrister might have asked in cross examination. It’s about justice being done, and being seen to be done. That’s probably not sufficient for an appeal thought.

I’m sorry it’s been such a stressful experience.

Dana28 Sat 18-May-19 18:28:12

I am past caring about whether I won or lost. I exposed them as lying on some points and also fabricating a piece of evidence. It was a discrimination /victimisation claim and constructive dismissal. There were various meetings and although I was righton my witness statement and when being cross examined, I made a mistake in the summing up by saying I said something at the wrong meeting. From what I understand though I wasn't under oath then??

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Chocolate50 Sat 18-May-19 20:25:12

Dana if you did well in the actual hearing making a mistake in the summing up shouldn't matter as much as maybe you would think.
I hope it goes well for you but I don't think that you will be told to pay for costs, very rare according to other posters so I wouldn't worry about that. Why did your employers go all the way to the tribunal & not settle out of court, what a stubborn bunch!
When do you get the judgement?

Dana28 Sat 18-May-19 22:53:47

I don't really know especially given the industry they are in. They must b

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prh47bridge Sun 19-May-19 09:01:04

You have not committed perjury. There is no such thing as accidental perjury. You will only be ordered to pay costs if the judge thinks you have tried to mislead the tribunal or you haven't co-operated at every stage (e.g. you have held back significant information until the hearing or failed to comply with the court's directions on disclosure). Saying you said something at the wrong meeting when summing up doesn't get close.

I wouldn't worry about the other side pulling disbelieving faces when you were giving evidence. They are trying to convince the judge that you are not a credible witness. I also wouldn't worry about the judge being irritated when you were lost in your paperwork. That is normal.

Being wrong on some points of law (assuming you were - if this was just what the other side said they may not be right. That is for the tribunal to decide) will only lose your case if those points were so fundamental to your argument that, without them, you don't have a case.

Constructive dismissal cases are very difficult to win. However, they aren't impossible and that wasn't your only claim. You may be right that you have lost but it isn't clear from the information you have posted.

RaymondReddington Wed 22-May-19 06:18:37

What was the outcome Dana? Hope you’re ok

Dana28 Wed 22-May-19 06:56:25

Judgment has been adjourned for 8 weeks!
The judge warned us that she hoped the panel have time to be able to make a judgment on the day but if not there would not be a time for the panel to reconvene until mid july!!

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Dana28 Wed 22-May-19 06:57:56

So I got an email yesterday to this effect. Nnot sure why it is taking them so long to deliberate and what that means for me

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DoctorDread Wed 22-May-19 07:02:57

No words of wisdom op other than to say I went through an ET a few years ago and luckily we settled before but it was a very stressful time and like you I was representing myself. I hope it goes better than you expect .

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