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Documents you can ask your employer for in a discrimination at work case - checklist

This advice applies to Scotland

The law which says you mustn’t be discriminated against is called the Equality Act 2010. If you’ve been discriminated against at work you can make a claim in the employment tribunal.

When you make your discrimination claim in the employment tribunal, you can ask the employer to provide a list of documents which are relevant to your case. This is called disclosure.

This page explains about what documents it may be useful to ask your employer for.

Asking your employer for documents

When you receive your employer’s response to your discrimination claim, you may want to ask them for further information or documents to help you prepare your case. Getting documentary evidence from the employer is known as disclosure.

You should write to your employer asking for a list of all documents relevant to your claim. If there are specific documents you know your employer has and which are relevant to your claim, you should ask for these as well.

If the employer doesn’t respond to your request or you think there are documents they’ve missed out, you can apply to the tribunal for an order for disclosure. This is an instruction from the tribunal to your employer about what should happen. You can do this by writing to the tribunal and asking for specific documents that you know exist. You can also ask the tribunal to tell the employer to disclose any documents the employer has in their possession and which are relevant to the issues in your case or that the employer intends to rely on when your case is heard.

Your employer can use the same procedure to ask you for information and documents.

Documents which may be relevant to your case

Documents which may be relevant in a discrimination claim include:

  • job advertisements, external or internal
  • the contents of your personnel file
  • your contract of employment or written statement of terms and conditions
  • staff handbook
  • pay-slips
  • job description
  • your employer’s written policies on sickness, bullying and harassment, equal opportunities, as well as their disciplinary and grievance procedures  
  • letters from your employer’s personnel department
  • internal memos
  • letters and e-mails
  • minutes of meetings
  • appraisal records
  • time-sheets and rotas
  • sickness records and certificates
  • written reasons for dismissal
  • letters relating to a dismissal or grievance procedure
  • statistical evidence - for example, about the race or gender make up of your employer’s workforce.

Next steps

Other useful information

Equality Advisory Support Service (EASS)

If you have experienced discrimination, you can get help from the EASS discrimination helpline.

Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

You can find useful information about discrimination on the EHRC website.

Acas

Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) provides free and impartial information and advice on all aspects of workplace relations and employment law.

To talk to an adviser about your employment problem, call the Acas helpline on 0300 123 1100.

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