Kemeh v Ministry of Defence [2014] EWCA Civ 91

This case at the Court of Appeal considered whether the £12,000 awarded for injury to feelings by the Employment Tribunal was excessive in light of the Vento guidelines. The Employment Appeal Tribunal said it was, and halved the compensation to £6,000. Kemeh appealed.

The Court of Appeal ruled that the aim of the Vento guidelines was to compensate injured feelings, and not to punish employers for poor staff management. The Vento guidelines provide that one-off incidents such as in this case should fall into the bottom band of compensation, and that in this case there was no justification for allocating a one-off incident to the middle band. To do so would constitute over-compensation.

Da’Bell v NSPCC UKEAT/227/09 updated the bands as follows:-

  • Top band (the most serious cases): £18,000 – £30,000
  • Middle band (cases which do not merit the top band): £6,000 – £18,000
  • Lower band (the least serious cases, such as one-off acts): £600 – £6,000


Deaf, hubby to Rachel, dad to Corey, Libby and Emily, Solicitor, Lecturer in Legal Practice at University of South Wales, PhD student at University of Leicester.

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