Welcome to the Newsletter of the Cobden House Chambers Employment Team. In this issue, we have focused on Applications and Default Judgments


While applications to the ET are commonplace, it is surprising how many parties still fail to comply with the requirements of Rule 11 of the ET Rules of Procedure. Failing to comply can result in a judge refusing to consider the application, which in turn leads to wasted costs, wasted time and the loss of a tactical advantage. As such, it is worth considering the requirements of the rule once more.

  • Applications can be made at any stage of the proceedings for an order to be issued, varied or revoked.
  • Rule 11(1) - Parties may also apply for a Case Management Discussion (CMD) or Pre-Hearing Review (PHR) to be held.
  • Rule 11(2) - An application should be made at least ten days before the date of a hearing if one has been listed, unless it is not practicable to do so. If an employment judge considers it in the interests of justice, shorter notice may be allowed.
  • The application should be in writing, should be addressed to the tribunal office and must include the case number for the proceedings.
  • The application should include the reasons for the request.
  • If the application is for a CMD or PHR, the application must state the orders that are being sought.
  • Rule 11(3) - The application must also explain how the order would assist the tribunal or judge in dealing with the proceedings efficiently and fairly
  • Rule 11(6) - If a judge refuses an application, the Secretary will inform the parties in writing unless the refusal is made at a hearing.

In addition, legally represented parties are obliged to notify the other parties of any application, other than where the application is for a witness order or relates to the production of documents (r 11(4)).

As such, the party making an application must provide to all other parties:
  1. details of the application and why it is made,
  2. explain that any objection must be sent to the tribunal office within seven days of receiving the application or, if a hearing is due to take place within 7 days, before the date of the hearing, whichever is earlier,
  3. state that any objection to the application must be copied to both the tribunal office and all other parties;
The applicant must also inform the tribunal office in writing that rule 11 has been followed.

Default Judgment

Default judgments are routinely ordered in the civil courts but are often overlooked in the Employment Tribunal context.
A default judgment may determine liability or it may determine liability and remedy.
A default judgment may be issued:

  • where a response is not received within the time limit
  • where the response is not accepted by the Secretary under rule 6(1) or by a chairman under rule 6(3), and the Employment Tribunal Office has not received an application under rule 34 to have that decision reviewed.

Where a default judgment has been issued, a Respondent can ask the Tribunal for a review. The application must be made in writing within 14 days of the date that the judgment was sent by the tribunal office. The time limit for making such an application can be extended if a judge considers that it is just and equitable to do so.

More information on applications for a review will be provided in a further episode of this newsletter.

Further details about the Employment Team at Cobden House can be found by Clicking Here and or can be provided by the Civil Clerks by telephoning 0161 833 6000.

By Nicholas Flanagan, Iris Ferber and Samantha Openshaw (© July 2010)



Although great care and attention has been taken in the preparation of this material, and the contents are believed to be correct, Cobden House Chambers and the barristers who practise there will not be held responsible for any errors contained herein, or any consequences arising from the use of this material.  In particular, no liability can be accepted where any person acts in reliance on these notes or the views expressed in this newsletter.




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