In a roadmap jointly published by the presidents of the employment tribunals in England and Wales and Scotland, has said that reverting to face-to-face hearings would not be enough to tackle the outstanding caseload.
In England and Wales, the backlog of outstanding cases stood at 51,614 by the end of February 2021, an increase of 45% compared to the baseline figure pre-Covid. Receipts have outstripped disposals in single claims for every week bar one since September 2020, with 6,550 new claims since Christmas compared with 5,881 dealt with.
Virtual hearings, by telephone or video, will become a constant feature even after the pandemic ends, with most preliminary hearings being dealt with my telephone or video.
Final hearings will vary. In most parts of Britain they will return in greater numbers to in-person but in London and the South East, where the backlog is most severe and to maximise use of the virtual region, they will default to video.