Discrimination at work: What should you do?

Caragh Bailey
5 min read
discrimination at work: Advice from Employment Law Friend
Discrimination at work is unacceptable. We have provided as much guidance as we can, to reduce some of the stress involved. If you are being discriminated against at work, here is our step by step guide for how to handle it.

You may wish to read our overview on discrimination first, including examples of discrimination at work, how to work out whether you are protected, and whether your employer is responsible.

Begin gathering evidence of the discrimination at work as soon as possible. Keep any written correspondence (emails, texts, instant messages) about the problem and keep a diary with clear notes outlining what happened and when, including any conversations you’ve had about it with anyone from work.

Time limitations
Act quickly. You have 3 months, minus one day, from the date that the discrimination occurs to make a claim to the employment tribunal.

If there are more than one separate incident, each will have a separate deadline.

If there is a series of several linked continuing incidents, or a continuing act, (like a discriminatory policy) the time limit begins on the date of the last incident.

If the last incident is not found to be discrimination, you may have missed the deadline for the previous incident that was discrimination.

If the incidents are too far apart they may not be classed as continuing acts and you may miss the deadline for previous incidents.

The safest option is to make your claim within 3 months, minus one day, of the earliest incident.

If you have missed the deadline, you may be able to submit a late claim in special circumstances.

You must notify ACAS that you intend to go to tribunal within the time limit, but it is best to try and solve your problem another way first. Legal disputes can become expensive, time consuming and emotionally draining.

If you are being mistreated or are facing dismissal because of your discrimination claim, this is Victimisation. Collect evidence of this too, you will be able to add victimisation to your claim.

It is best to seek advice before you complain, to get help building your case.
Contact one of our discrimination at work specialists who can review your case.

Employment Law Specialist | Competitive Quotes | Straight Talking Legal Support

    Have an informal discussion with your employer telling them what has happened and why you believe it was unfair discrimination.
    Raise a formal grievance, if the problem has not been resolved.
If you are close to the deadline, you can begin the tribunal process while waiting for the results.

    Negotiate with your employer to reach a settlement agreement.

If your settlement includes a gagging order (Non Disclosure Agreement or confidentiality clause) you may break this, only to report wrongdoing in the public interest (whistleblowing).

Our specialist discrimination at work solicitors can help you negotiate your settlement. If you'd like legal representation negotiating a settlement, contact us for a review of your case.
    Take legal action if other methods have failed.

If you are no longer employed by them:
  • Act quickly to meet the time limit.
  • If you’re out of work, make a note of any wages you’ve lost.
  • Include expenses of looking for a new job, such as travel costs for travelling to interviews.

  • Frequently Asked Questions
    If you are forced to leave your job, because of discrimination at work or victimisation, you may be able to claim constructive dismissal at tribunal as well. Make sure you give the discrimination as your reason for leaving in your letter of resignation.
    If you’ve been dismissed you can still take action about the discrimination. You may be able to claim unfair dismissal as well. First, appeal your dismissal on grounds of discrimination (or victimisation, or both). Ask your employer in writing for their reasons for dismissing you.
    If you think you’ve been given a bad reference because of your protected characteristic or because you’re being victimised for challenging discrimination at work, you can make a claim but you’ll need evidence. Ask the employer(s) who requested the reference for a copy. Or ask the employer who gave the reference for a copy. If this supports your claim, you can report discrimination as explained earlier in this article.
    If you are concerned about the costs of going to court you may be able to get legal aid to pay for a solicitor.

    Take action against discrimination in the workplace.

    Get in touch and our specialist discrimination solicitors can review your discrimination case and advise you as to whether it is worth hiring legal representation to win your claim.

    Employment Law Specialist | Competitive Quotes | Straight Talking Legal Support

This content is provided free of charge for information purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied on as such. No responsibility for the accuracy and/or correctness of the information and commentary set out in the article, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed or accepted by any member of our company. For employment law advice please get in contact and speak to your employment law solicitors.
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Please be advised that we are a UK company and our advice applies to employment law in England and Wales, only.
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