Anyone who believes that you have discriminated against, harassed or victimised them can make a claim to a county or sheriff court. In England and Wales a person who does not have mental capacity, or who is under 18 will have to make a claim through a ‘litigation friend’ who is an adult appointed to conduct the claim on their behalf (often, but not always, their parent).
A claim must normally be started (and, in Scotland, served on the institution) within six months of the alleged discrimination. Where there has been a continuing process of discrimination taking place over a period of time, the six months begins at the date of the last discriminatory act. Courts have the discretion to consider a claim brought outside the six-month period if they consider that it is fair to do so.
A county or sheriff court can:
- Declare that you have unlawfully discriminated against, harassed or victimised the person making the claim, or declare that no unlawful discrimination, harassment or victimisation has taken place.
- Impose an injunction (in England and Wales) or specific implement or interdict (in Scotland) requiring you to do something (such as admit the person as a student) or to prevent you from repeating any discriminatory act in the future.
- Order you to pay compensation including compensation for injury to feelings.
- Order you to pay interest on any compensation.
- Order either party to pay costs.
Last updated: 19 Feb 2019