ET Cost

V Gray made this Freedom of Information request to Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Tameside Borough Council

I would like to know how much the Council has spent outsourcing to either Barristers Chambers or Solicitors at Employment Tribunals for all Council Staff (including Teaching Staff). Any combination of those below, between 1st August 2000 and the 31 October 2010:

1) For constructive dismissal

2) Unfair dismissal

3) One (or more) of the various discrimination claims and/or under the Protection from Harassment Act

4) Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998

5) Any other Employment issues, I may have omitted.

Please name the Solicitors/Barristers that the Council have outsourced to: For example, 2010 Number (which is the cost spent) Name (Name of Solicitor/Barrister). Please provide the figures in the following format e.g. 2006 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITOR OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; 2007 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITOR OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; 2008 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITORS OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE ; 2010 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITORS OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; etc, thus making it easier for one to read and to ensure there is no misunderstandings.

I would request that you include VAT in the figures. Not a before and after VAT, a figure which included total cost including VAT.

Please also send this information as "calendar years" not financial years.

Please note that I do not seek or require any personal information such as names and addresses – only the total figures and name of the law firms whom the Council outsourced too.

I would ask that you remember the statutory duty imposed upon public authorities by virtue of Section 16 of the Freedom of Information Act to provide advice and assistance to requesters. If for any reason you are leaning toward rejecting any part of this request or if you plan to argue that it is unmanageable or unanswerable in any way then I would expect you to contact me promptly to find ways to answer this request to our mutual Satisfaction.

Yours faithfully,

G

Dear Tameside Borough Council,

I must apologise there was slight technical glitch when I first registered which omitted my name. This has now been rectified by the have you say team, who have been extremely helpful in resolving this issue.
I look forward to receiving the correct information from you.

Yours faithfully,

V Gray

Dear Tameside Borough Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Tameside Borough Council's handling of my FOI request 'ET Cost'.

As they have failed to respond to the request within the given timescale.

Please undertake to have the decision reviewed by a senior officer and communicate their response within the relevant timescale on this web page.

I would point out you are legally obliged to provide the correct figures and names of Barristers/Solicitors and the total cost.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/et...

Yours faithfully,

V Gray

Dear Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council,

Please explain why you have failed to repsond this request.

Yours faithfully,

V Gray

V Gray left an annotation ()

Message sent to leader of Council:

From:<xxxxxx>
Subject: Please asist with a FOI thank you
To: Kieranxxxxxxxx
Date: Tuesday, 12 July, 2011, 12:22

Dear Mr Quinn

I am so sorry to have to contact you. I feel your staff are ignoring my request. I sent the following request http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/et... on the 14 January 2011. Tameside Council have not responded to this request. I have noticed the Tameside Council have claimed with some request that they failed to receive the requests. Which is highly unusual as all other Councils have received these requests. If there was an issue with the emails one would of thought as a competent caring Council they would of rectified this problem

Could you please intervene and ensure the correct information is given through the have your say website.

Thank you for your assistance

V Gray

Sandra Stewart, Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Mr/Ms Gray

Thank you for your email. There is no request attached or set out in your email. Please supply details in order that we can assist you.

Yours sincerely,

Sandra Stewart
Borough Solicitor

Contact Details:

Postal Address Address: Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council, Council Offices, Wellington Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 6DL
Online Service Web address: www.tameside.gov.uk
Telephone Number Telephone: 0161 342 3028
Fax Number Fax: 0161 342 2747
Send us a Message E-mail: [Tameside Borough Council request email]
In Person PA to Borough Solicitor: Christine Handley

Confidentiality: This e-mail its contents and any attachments are intended only for the above named. As this e-mail may contain confidential or legally privileged information, if you are not, or suspect that you are not the above named or the person responsible for delivering the message to the above named, delete or destroy the email and any attachments immediately. The contents of this e-mail may not be disclosed to nor used by anyone other than the above named.

Security and Viruses: please note that we cannot guarantee that this message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and amended.

Monitoring: The Council undertakes monitoring of both incoming and outgoing e-mails. You should therefore be aware that if you send an e-mail to a person within the Council it may be subject to any monitoring deemed necessary by the organisation from time to time. The views of the author may not necessarily reflect those of the Council.

Access: As a public body, the Council may be required to disclose this e-mail (or any response to it) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, unless the information in it is covered by one of the exemptions in the Act.

show quoted sections

Dear Sandra Stewart,

I suggest your look at the website. http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/et...

Yours sincerely,

V Gray

Sandra Stewart, Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Mr/Ms Gray

Thank you for your email and for referring me to your request at: http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/et...

I do not know why we have not received your request to date. Our IT system has 'white listed ' all emails originating from WhatDoTheyKnow's server although on a few occasions some emails from this address have been blocked for security reasons for having spyware or cookies attached to the emails being sent.

I note from the link you have sent me that you have not had a response since you sent an email through the site on the 11 January 2011. I note that today is the first time you have chased a response with the Council both with me and the Leader of the Council.

You will note from the website that in 99% of requests on line we acknowledge those requests within 5 working days.

In addition whilst you have not have a good experience you will note that the significant majority of requests through the site; which we regard as undertaking a very useful public service; are undertaken on time with full disclosure.

I note your request received today as follows:

I would like to know how much the Council has spent outsourcing to either Barristers Chambers or Solicitors at Employment Tribunals for all Council Staff (including Teaching Staff). Any combination of those below, between 1st August 2000 and the 31 October 2010:

1) For constructive dismissal

2) Unfair dismissal

3) One (or more) of the various discrimination claims and/or under
the Protection from Harassment Act

4) Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998

5) Any other Employment issues, I may have omitted.

Please name the Solicitors/Barristers that the Council have outsourced to: For example, 2010 Number (which is the cost spent) Name (Name of Solicitor/Barrister). Please provide the figures in the following format e.g. 2006 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITOR OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; 2007 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITOR OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; 2008 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITORS OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE ; 2010 – NUMBER HERE AND SOLICITORS OR BARRISTERS NAME HERE; etc, thus making it easier for one to read and to ensure there is no misunderstandings.

I would request that you include VAT in the figures. Not a before and after VAT, a figure which included total cost including VAT.

Please also send this information as "calendar years" not financial years.

Please note that I do not seek or require any personal information such as names and addresses – only the total figures and name of the law firms whom the Council outsourced too.

In accordance with legislation the Council retains it financial records for 6 years. Consequently we hold information in relation to the matter you raise back until 2004.

During this period the Council has outsourced to either Barristers Chambers or Solicitors at Employment Tribunals in relation to two employment matters otherwise the work is undertaken in house.

One matter related to a case of sex discrimination and breach of maternity regulations in respect of which a barrister was instructed to cover the hearing as I was absent on compassionate leave in July 2007 and unable to undertake the matter myself.

The other matter relates to a number of equal pay claims dating back to 2007 in respect of which the Council has instructed SAS Daniels LLP and prior to that Slater Heelis Collier Littler Solicitors to maintain consistency of representation when the instructed solicitor moved firms. Slater Heelis/ SAS Daniels LLP have instructed various barristers to advise on this matter whose fees are contained as disbursements within the Slater Heelis bill. It will not be possible to disaggregate these costs from the total bill paid to Slater Heelis as our financial system will only record the total invoice paid to Slater Heelis.

I will ask the Council’s Accountancy service to collate this information requested by you and forward it to you as soon as possible and within the 20 working days provided under the legislation.

If you are unhappy with the way this matter has been dealt with in any way please do not hesitate to request a review by emailing me with your concerns.

If subsequently you are not satisfied with the Council’s decision you may apply to the Information Commissioner for a decision. Generally, the ICO cannot make a decision unless you have exhausted the complaints procedure provided by the Council. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at the following address:

The Information Commissioner
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire SK9 5AF

Telephone: 01625 545745
Web Address: www.ico.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,

Sandra Stewart
Borough Solicitor

show quoted sections

Dear Sandra Stewart,

Thank you for your prompt response. I look forward to receiving the correct information.

Yours sincerely,

V Gray

V Gray left an annotation ()

Dear Mr Quinn

Thank you for your prompt response. I look forward to receiving the correct information.

Yours sincerely

V Gray

--- On Tue, 12/7/11, Kieran Quinn <kieran wrote:

From: Kieran Quinn
Date: Tuesday, 12 July, 2011, 20:33

Dear Ms Gray,

Thank you for your email received 12 July 2011 13:23hrs.

I understand that your request was received by the Council for the first time today at Tue 12/07/2011 12:19 hrs.

The Council’s takes transparency and open government very seriously. You will note from the website that we acknowledge all requests received within 5 working days and in the significant majority of cases we have been able to disclose the information requested within the 20 workings days provided for.

Clearly, technology is not perfect and I am aware that the Council’s ICT security system recognizes the ‘whatdotheyknow’ as a valid email address but has in a few circumstances blocked emails which have contained spyware or cookies.

I note in the history of your email request that your request was not immune from technical glitches as you apologise for the failure of the system to register your name which was helpfully resolved by the website’s technical team.

I understand that your request which was received for the first time today has been acknowledged and responded to as far as it can be by the Council’s Solicitor on the date of receipt 12/07/2011 at 20:42 hrs with further information to follow.

I am sorry that you have not experience excellent services on this occasion should you not receive an acknowledgement within 5 working days of making a request for information, please do not hesitate to contact the borough solicitor directly to check that we have received your request.

If you are unhappy with the way your request has been dealt with you can complain in writing to the Borough Solicitor at sandra.stewart@tameside.gov.uk or once you have exhausted the Council’s complaints service by applying to the Information Commissioner for a decision who can be contacted at the following address:

The Information Commissioner

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire SK9 5AF

Telephone: 01625 545745

Web Address: www.ico.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,

Cllr Kieran Quinn

Executive Leader

Confidentiality: This e-mail its contents and any attachments are intended only for the above named. As this e-mail may contain confidential or legally privileged information, if you are not, or suspect that you are not the above named or the person responsible for delivering the message to the above named, delete or destroy the email and any attachments immediately. The contents of this e-mail may not be disclosed to nor used by anyone other than the above named.
Security and Viruses: please note that we cannot guarantee that this message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and amended.
Monitoring: The Council undertakes monitoring of both incoming and outgoing e-mails. You should therefore be aware that if you send an e-mail to a person within the Council it may be subject to any monitoring deemed necessary by the organisation from time to time. The views of the author may not necessarily reflect those of the Council.
Access: As a public body, the Council may be required to disclose this e-mail (or any response to it) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, unless the information in it is covered by one of the exemptions in the Act.

Gail Bates, Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

1 Attachment

Dear V Gray

Thank you for your Freedom of Information Request. Please find attached
response to your request. If you require any further assistance, please
do not hesitate to contact me.

Kind Regards

Gail Bates
Quality Assurance Officer
For Borough Solicitor

Contact Details:

[1]Postal Address Address: Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council,
Council Offices, Wellington Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 6DL

[2]Online Service Web address: [3]www.tameside.gov.uk

[4]Telephone Number Telephone: 0161 342 3028

[5]Fax Number Fax: 0161 342 2747

[6]Send us a Message E-mail: gail.bates[7]@tameside.gov.uk

Confidentiality: This e-mail its contents and any attachments are intended
only for the above named. As this e-mail may contain confidential or
legally privileged information, if you are not, or suspect that you are
not the above named or the person responsible for delivering the message
to the above named, delete or destroy the email and any attachments
immediately. The contents of this e-mail may not be disclosed to nor used
by anyone other than the above named.

Security and Viruses: please note that we cannot guarantee that this
message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and
amended.

Monitoring: The Council undertakes monitoring of both incoming and
outgoing e-mails. You should therefore be aware that if you send an e-mail
to a person within the Council it may be subject to any monitoring deemed
necessary by the organisation from time to time. The views of the author
may not necessarily reflect those of the Council.

Access: As a public body, the Council may be required to disclose this
e-mail (or any response to it) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000,
unless the information in it is covered by one of the exemptions in the
Act.

Confidentiality: This e-mail its contents and any attachments are intended
only for the above named. As this e-mail may contain confidential or
legally privileged information, if you are not, or suspect that you are
not the above named or the person responsible for delivering the message
to the above named, delete or destroy the email and any attachments
immediately. The contents of this e-mail may not be disclosed to nor used
by anyone other than the above named.

Security and Viruses: please note that we cannot guarantee that this
message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and
amended.

Monitoring: The Council undertakes monitoring of both incoming and
outgoing e-mails. You should therefore be aware that if you send an e-mail
to a person within the Council it may be subject to any monitoring deemed
necessary by the organisation from time to time. The views of the author
may not necessarily reflect those of the Council.

Access: As a public body, the Council may be required to disclose this
e-mail (or any response to it) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000,
unless the information in it is covered by one of the exemptions in the
Act.

References

Visible links
3. https://owa.tameside.gov.uk/exchweb/bin/...
6. mailto:
7. mailto:[email address]

Dear Gail Bates,

Thank you for providing the correct information.

Yours sincerely,

V Gray

Gail Bates, Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

Thank you for your email. I am out of the office until Tuesday 19th July
2011. My emails will not be redirected to anyone else in my absence.
Thank you.

Confidentiality: This e-mail its contents and any attachments are intended
only for the above named. As this e-mail may contain confidential or
legally privileged information, if you are not, or suspect that you are
not the above named or the person responsible for delivering the message
to the above named, delete or destroy the email and any attachments
immediately. The contents of this e-mail may not be disclosed to nor used
by anyone other than the above named.

Security and Viruses: please note that we cannot guarantee that this
message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and
amended.

Monitoring: The Council undertakes monitoring of both incoming and
outgoing e-mails. You should therefore be aware that if you send an e-mail
to a person within the Council it may be subject to any monitoring deemed
necessary by the organisation from time to time. The views of the author
may not necessarily reflect those of the Council.

Access: As a public body, the Council may be required to disclose this
e-mail (or any response to it) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000,
unless the information in it is covered by one of the exemptions in the
Act.