In the past, being shouted at or humiliated by your boss or colleagues might have been seen as normal behaviour in the workplace. As well as making your life at work difficult, this behaviour can cause you to feel anxious, depressed or alone. Fortunately, attitudes towards workplace bullying have changed and so have employment laws. Therefore, if you’ve been harassed or bullied at work, you may be eligible to make a workplace bullying claim for any suffering.
You shouldn’t dismiss workplace bullying as being “one of those things”. Instead, you could contact one of our specialists to discuss your options. During a free consultation, they’ll assess what happened and could connect you with one of our personal injury solicitors if your case is strong enough. They’ll help you file your claim on a No Win No Fee basis if it is accepted meaning you won’t pay legal fees unless you are compensated.
To talk to us right away, please call us on 0800 6524 881 today. Otherwise, please continue reading to find out more on how to claim compensation for workplace bullying.
Table of contents
- What Is Harassment Or Workplace Bullying?
- Types Of Workplace Bullying Compensation Claims
- How Workplace Bullying Often Occurs
- What Should I Do If I’m Being Bullied At Work?
- How Do Workplace Bullying Compensation Claims Work?
- What Compensation Could I Claim For Workplace Bullying?
- No Win No Fee Bullying At Work Claims
- Starting The Workplace Bullying Claims Process
One law that’s often relevant in workplace bullying claims is the Equality Act 2010. It defines harassment as:
- Any unwanted conduct linked to a protected characteristic that violates the person’s dignity and results in a degrading, hostile, offensive, intimidating or hostile environment.
The Equality Act doesn’t actually define the term ‘bullying’ but it is the phrase that’s often used to describe various forms of harassment in the workplace.
The term ‘protected characteristic’ is important in workplace bullying claims. If you can show that the bullying was based on any of the following, you might have grounds to take action:
- Religion or beliefs.
- Gender reassignment.
- Sexual orientation.
- Marital status.
If you believe you’ve been bullied at work and the actions were linked to a protected characteristic, call our team today for a free review of your options.
There are many examples of harassment that could lead to workplace bullying claims. We won’t list them all here but some common examples include:
- Verbal abuse. This could involve you being shouted at by a supervisor. Another is where you have to listen to colleagues constantly make jokes about you.
- Rumours. If your colleagues gossip about you or spread rumours about you, this could constitute bullying and lead to a compensation claim.
- Being undermined. You could have grounds to make a workplace bullying claim if you have faced criticism or been undermined by your boss (or colleagues) without a valid reason.
- Not being allowed to apply for promotion. If you are denied training opportunities, are not promoted or are not allowed to apply for promotion because of a protected characteristic, a workplace bullying compensation claim might be possible. For example, a claim might be possible if a promotion was only open to men because it involved a lot of physical work.
- Being singled out. Essentially, you could be eligible to claim compensation for bullying at work if you are treated any differently to those in a similar role to yours.
If you’ve been subjected to bullying at work and you can demonstrate that it was related to one of the protected characteristics listed earlier, we could help you to begin a compensation claim.
Some forms of bullying at work are more obvious than others. In this section, we’ve listed some of the ways in which harassment and bullying at work occurs.
- Face to face. This is probably the most obvious form of bullying where the victim is immediately aware of what’s going on.
- In writing. You could also face bullying in emails or text messages from your boss, supervisor or colleagues.
- Online. In recent years, online bullying and harassment have become more common. This could involve rumours or accusations about you being posted on social media sites.
- Telephone. This is similar to face-to-face bullying but is far less likely to be witnessed by others.
Some forms of workplace harassment can cause you to suffer instantly. For example, if you’re shouted at in a room full of colleagues, you might feel anxious or embarrassed. However, some workplace bullying compensation claims can be based on long-term harassment such as little comments about you being sent by text message over a prolonged period.
In the next section of this guide, we’ll look at what you can do if you are subjected to workplace bullying to try and stop it from happening.
There are some steps you could take if you’re being bullied at work. They include:
- Talking to your employer. If you can, you should report your concerns to a supervisor or your HR department. Employers have a duty to protect your well-being at work so must try to take action where necessary.
- Talk to the perpetrator. Where it is safe to do so, you may wish to discuss your feelings with the person who is bullying you. They may not realise the distress they are causing and your conversation could mean they’ll change their ways.
- Keep records. It’s important to keep a record of events if you’re considering claiming compensation for workplace bullying. You should keep a diary of when and where you were bullied, who was involved and what was said. You should also print out emails relating to any meetings you’ve had with your employer.
If you’ve raised your concerns but nothing was done to try and change things, you could be entitled to sue your employer. If you’d like us to check whether you’re eligible to claim workplace bullying compensation, please get in touch with us today.
Before you decide to make a workplace bullying compensation claim, you should always give your employer the opportunity to put things right first. If they can’t or won’t, you might need to follow the company’s formal grievance procedure. After that, you could begin an employment tribunal if you’re still not happy.
Before a tribunal, you may need to go down the ACAS early conciliation process. This is where ACAS will work with both parties to try and resolve the issue amicably. If this can’t be achieved, ACAS will issue a certificate which would allow you to begin a tribunal.
Tribunals are where a court will review your evidence and your employers and make a decision about your claim. As you can imagine, this can be a complex process which can seem overwhelming. If you work with one of our solicitors, they’ll use their experience and skills to handle everything on your behalf and try to make the process less stressful.
In some cases, your solicitor could reach an out-of-court settlement with your employer if liability can be agreed upon prior to your tribunal date.
Importantly, the time limit for harassment claims is 3-months less one day from the date of the last act of bullying to begin the claims process. Therefore, if you are thinking of making a claim, please contact us as soon as possible.
There are numerous ways in which those suffering from workplace bullying can be compensated both for physical injuries and psychological injuries. We have detailed compensation amounts for psychological injuries below, however, for physical injuries (as there can be so many) we’d suggest using our compensation calculator.
It is worth noting that psychiatric damage will revolve around the individual’s ability to cope with life, impact on their private life, treatment required, future vulnerability as well as the development of additional mental issues.
- Relatively moderate psychiatric damage will relate directly to the duration over which an individual’s life was impacted but falls short of issues such as phobias and other disorders. In this instance compensation from £1,540, to up to £5,860 will be available.
- Moderate psychiatric damage will reflect the impact on the individual’s life but will also take into account the long-term prognosis and professional help required. In this situation, compensation from £5,860 up to £19,070 will be available.
- Moderately severe psychiatric damage includes severe cases of work-related stress brought on by bullying and harassment. Very often this will result in an inability to return to the workplace thereby attracting compensation from £19,070 up to £54,830.
- Severe cases of bullying and harassment can have an extremely traumatic long-term impact on an individual’s life and ability to cope. Where the medical prognosis offers little hope in the longer-term, compensation from £54,830 up to £115,730 will be available.
It is impossible to cover all of the potential mental health issues that long-term bullying and harassment can lead to. The impact on an individual’s life may also affect their nearest and dearest and can be literally life-changing for everyone.
If you’d like us to assess how much you could claim for workplace bullying, please call today.
We believe that you have a better chance of winning a workplace bullying claim if you are represented by a specialist solicitor. Our team offer a No Win No Fee service for any claim they take on which means you:
- Don’t need to pay them in advance.
- You won’t pay for your solicitor’s work if your case is lost.
- You’ll pay a success fee if your case is won and you are awarded compensation.
If you and your solicitor agree to work together, they’ll send you a Conditional Fee Agreement to read and sign. This will formally explain what work your solicitor will do and when you’ll need to pay them. Essentially, if your claim fails and you are not compensated, you will not need to pay any legal fees at all.
To check if you could be eligible to make a No Win No Fee workplace bullying claim, contact our team today.
The easiest way to see if you could be compensated for workplace bullying is to speak with one of our specialists on 0800 6524 881.
After reviewing your case, they could connect you with one of our expert solicitors who’ll work on a No Win No Fee basis if they agree to represent you.
Thanks for reading this guide about workplace bullying compensation claims, and if you have any further questions about the process, please use live chat to contact us.