Employment Tribunal Litigant in Person Support Scheme (ELIPS)
The ELA Pro Bono Committee has set up this pro bono scheme to assist unrepresented litigants in Tribunal. It is similar to other schemes already successfully operated in the High Court and family court. The ELIPS scheme has the support of the Judges at the Employment Tribunals, and is being run in collaboration with the Bar Pro Bono Unit, LawWorks (the Solicitors Pro Bono Group) and the Free Representation Unit.
The scheme has received full approval from HMCTS. It currently runs every Thursday at London Central Employment Tribunal, and once a month at Cardiff Employment Tribunal (usually the third Friday of the month).
As well as receiving full approval from HMCTS to be a permanent scheme, ELIPS has the support of the judiciary and has been endorsed by the President of the Employment Tribunals, Brian Doyle. In a recent letter to ELA, he said:
"Your work in supporting litigants in person is very much appreciated, we hope that the Scheme in London Central will continue successfully and we are optimistic that means of rolling out the model in other parts of the Country will emerge."
The scheme provides on-the-day advice to unrepresented litigants (claimants and respondents), aimed at those who cannot afford representation (although it will not be means tested).
The scheme offers:
- On the day one off advice (on any claim)
- On the day representation:
- Simple one day (or less) claims
- Preliminary hearings
It does not provide on the day representation in complex/multi-day hearings.
ELIPS is manned by ELA members and there will be two volunteers on each day (to assist each other and manage conflicts).
Please email us if you are interested in volunteering for ELIPS, either at London Central or at Cardiff Employment Tribunal, or if you would like more information.
Volunteers must be qualified employment solicitors or barristers with a minimum of 2 year’s PQE.
ELIPS ‘Phone a Friend’ scheme
ELA is grateful to Littleton Chambers, Matrix Chambers and Old Square Chambers who are supporting the ELIPS scheme through ‘Phone a Friend’ – a list of barristers who are happy to be called by volunteers on ELIPS duty days, either in an emergency or for reassurance on a point.
A note about insurance under the ELIPS scheme
Barrister volunteers must be tenants at a set of chambers. They will volunteer under the auspices of the Bar Pro Bono Unit. As a result, volunteers will be covered by their own insurance under the Bar Mutual Insurance scheme.
Solicitors will volunteer under the auspices of LawWorks and are covered by insurance put in place by LawWorks.