"He has excellent knowledge of employment law and is a persuasive advocate. His analytical approach to cases inspires confidence in both instructing solicitors and lay clients"Chambers & Partners 2022
"He quickly gets to grips with the detail of the matter and identifies the key strengths and weaknesses of the case"Legal 500 2021
Clients find him to be both personable and professional. He quickly gets to grips with the detail of the matter and identifies the key strengths and weaknesses of the case."Chambers & Partners 2021
"A strong advocate who wins his clients' trust."Legal 500, 2020
"He has a superb grasp of details, as well as being a very good advocate."Chambers & Partners, 2020
Tim Dracass specialises in employment law, combining his expert knowledge with many years’ experience of tribunal, civil and criminal court advocacy.
He is consistently recommended in the leading directories (‘Chambers & Partners’ and the ‘Legal 500’) for his work and expertise in the employment law sphere.
Tim is an employment law specialist with over 20 years of experience at the Bar. He is consistently recommended in leading legal directories (‘Chambers and Partners’, ‘The Legal 500’)
He acts for both claimants and respondents in the Employment Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal in a wide range of cases. His respondent clients have included notable blue-chip companies (e.g. B&Q, Sainsbury’s), local authorities and regional police and fire services. He has considerable experience of all types of employment litigation including complex and multi-day hearings and cases involving substantial compensation claims.
Tim regularly advises on and appears in cases involving:
Tim also appears in County Court and High Court proceedings in employment-related matters such as breach of contract, stress at work/ protection from harassment, restraint of trade and negligent reference cases. Drawing on his past experience of criminal court advocacy, he has an interest in professional disciplinary and regulatory proceedings and has previously acted in directors’ disqualification proceedings.
Tim is licensed to accept instructions under the direct public access scheme in appropriate cases.
Acted for the Respondent Fire Service in a 10 day hearing for a complex equal pay/ constructive dismissal case (which has previously been the EAT twice on a preliminary time-limit issue – see below).
Judgment is currently awaited.
Represented the Respondent Borough Council in a 3 day unfair dismissal (gross misconduct) case, conducted remotely (via CVP/ Skype). The Claimant’s claim was successfully resisted.
Acting for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Authority on a long-running equal pay dispute raised by a former employee. The case involved consideration of the concept of a ‘stable working relationship’ for time limit purposes. After a preliminary hearing, at which the Respondent succeeded in establishing that part of the Claimant’s claim was out of time, the Claimant appealed to the EAT. The EAT (HHJ Martyn Barklem) allowed the appeal and remitted the matter for a further hearing before the differently constituted Tribunal. At the 3 day remitted hearing, the Respondent was successful again. The Claimant appealed once again (this time instructing leading counsel Daphne Romney QC), resulting in a second EAT hearing (before Eady J). The substantive claims raise interesting and potentially important issues over the remuneration of ‘green book’ and ‘grey book’ staff within the fire service.
Represented the Claimant in a claim brought under s. 64 of TULR(C)A that she had been unjustifiably disciplined by her trade union. Case involved particularly unusual legal and factual issues (and is currently under appeal to the EAT).
Successfully acted for the Claimant on a high value unfair dismissal case. The claim was upheld after an initial 4 day hearing on liability. At the subsequent Remedy Hearing, the Claimant was awarded £82,455.
Successfully represented the Respondent police force in a complex, multi-party disability discrimination claim relating to the hearing test entry requirements for firearms officers. The case had important ramifications for the College of Policing guidance on such matters.
Successfully represented the Claimant in a high value unfair dismissal claim. Case involved significant disputes of fact and also legal complexities surrounding the ambit of pre-termination conversations under s. 111A ERA 1996.
Instructed to act for the Respondent on a factually complex unfair dismissal claim involving a large number of documents and multiple witnesses. The case turned on the fairness of a dismissal for an irretrievable breakdown in the working relationship as constituting ‘some other substantial reason’.
Instructed to advise on and represent Respondent police force in appeal to the EAT against a decision made at an earlier preliminary hearing (at which I did not appear). Advised on grounds of appeal, drafted skeleton argument and appeared at EAT hearing.
Instructed to act for the Respondent in resisting a ‘post-employment’ whistleblowing detriment claim brought by a teacher. Case was listed for 7 days. All claims were dismissed by the Tribunal following a contested hearing. Also acted for the Respondent in successfully obtaining a costs order against the Claimant.
Represented the Respondent council in race discrimination/ victimisation hearing which took place over 3 days. Case was further complicated by various disclosure issues that arose during the hearing. However, all claims were successfully resisted in the end and a costs order was made against the Claimant.
Represented the Claimant in complex unfair dismissal, race discrimination and victimisation hearing lasting 10 days, involving multiple allegations and a large number of witnesses and documents. Claim was successful in part (unfair dismissal claim upheld) resulting in a further 2 day Remedy hearing in August 2017.
Successfully represented Sussex Police on a complex disability discrimination claim brought by an existing employee involving multiple factual/ legal complaints spanning several years. The hearing lasted 10 days with 12 witnesses giving evidence and over 2000 pages of documents.
The case is particularly notable because he subsequently assisted the police force in obtaining a £20,000 costs order against the Claimant: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5bee99f4e5274a0829c9fc0a/Ms_M_Baker_v_Sussex_Police_2301883-2015_Cost_12-11-2018.pdf
Acted for the Respondent company in successfully defending claims for automatically unfair dismissal, race discrimination and victimisation over a 5 day hearing. All of the Claimant’s complaints were dismissed, with costs being awarded in Respondent’s favour at a subsequent hearing.
Instructed to represent the Respondent at a 6 day hearing involving multiple and historical allegations of discrimination. Claims for disability discrimination and unfair dismissal were successfully resisted.
Acted for the Respondent company who faced claims brought by a former employee for unfair dismissal, race discrimination / victimisation and disability discrimination. Successfully defended all claims after a contested 5 day hearing.
Acted for the Claimant in a whistle-blowing constructive dismissal claim against the NHS. After a four day liability hearing the Claimant succeeded in her constructive unfair dismissal claim and was awarded substantial compensation at a subsequent remedies hearing.
Advised and represented a senior health and safety manager in a high value unfair dismissal and whistle-blowing claim. The case was listed for a 5 day ET hearing and was settled on the second day.
Instructed on behalf of the administrator in a complex a multi-party TUPE case, which resulted in a further contested costs hearing before Southampton ET. Successfully resisted the application for costs and managed to win a ‘cross-costs application’.
Tim has many years experience of criminal advocacy having appeared in numerous Crown Court jury trials and Court of Appeal hearings.
His cases have covered the full range of criminal allegations in nature, complexity and severity including violence, drugs, dishonesty and fraud, sexual offences and road traffic offences. A number of his cases have attracted considerable media attention (examples include a case involving a well-known musician and a high profile bomb hoax case).
Represented Crown on an appeal against conviction following what appeared to be inconsistent verdicts by the jury at trial.
Successfully appealed against a sentence imposed for robbery.
Successfully resisted an appeal against conviction involving the law relating to inferences from silence.
Successfully resisted an appeal against conviction involving the law in relation to proof of previous convictions for bad character applications.
Appeared for the Crown on a judicial review case relating to ‘grave crime’ arguments.
Tim also regularly appears in County Court and High Court proceedings, particularly in employment-related matters such as breach of contract, stress at work/ protection from harassment claims, restraint of trade and negligent reference cases.
Drawing on his experience of criminal advocacy, he has an interest in professional disciplinary and regulatory proceedings.