Overview

dispute resolution regulations


Show Summary Details

Quick Reference

The Employment Act 2002 led to the introduction of dispute resolution regulations in 2004, intended to promote the resolution of disputes at workplace level and reduce the number of cases being taken to an Employment Tribunal. On the one hand, they require employers to follow statutory dismissal and disciplinary procedures (DDPs), whilst on the other they impose statutory grievance procedures (SGPs). DDPs have to be followed for all dismissals for standard reasons and require a three step procedure: (1) the employer sends the employee a letter setting out the reasons for possible dismissal; (2) the employer holds a meeting with the employee to discuss the case, after which the decision is communicated to the employee (if the decision is to dismiss a right of appeal is confirmed); (3) the employee exercises the right of appeal and a further hearing is arranged. For gross misconduct, a two-step procedure may be used. If an employer dismisses without using the procedure then the dismissal is automatically unfair and higher compensation can be paid to the employee. If an employee fails to take advantage of the right to appeal then their compensation can be reduced by between 10 and 50 per cent. SGPs are mandatory for all employers, large and small, and must be used by workers prior to applying to an Employment Tribunal for any issue, other than one relating to dismissal. The minimum requirements are for a three-step procedure: (1) the employee writes to the employer setting out the nature of the grievance; (2) a hearing is organized at which the grievance is aired and the employer must respond with a decision, though not necessarily in writing; (3) the employee appeals if not satisfied and a more senior manager should be present ‘unless not reasonably practical’. The need to follow an SGP before taking a case to a tribunal has been sharply criticized for reducing workers' access to the justice system but it should be pointed out that it is only necessary to lodge a complaint (that is complete stage 1) before applying to a tribunal. In December 2006, the Government ordered a review of dispute resolution, led by Michael Gibbons. This recommended that the dispute resolution regulations be repealed, as they had failed to be effective, and the future of this body of law is consequently uncertain.

(1) the employer sends the employee a letter setting out the reasons for possible dismissal; (2) the employer holds a meeting with the employee to discuss the case, after which the decision is communicated to the employee (if the decision is to dismiss a right of appeal is confirmed); (3) the employee exercises the right of appeal and a further hearing is arranged. For gross misconduct, a two-step procedure may be used.

(1) the employee writes to the employer setting out the nature of the grievance; (2) a hearing is organized at which the grievance is aired and the employer must respond with a decision, though not necessarily in writing; (3) the employee appeals if not satisfied and a more senior manager should be present ‘unless not reasonably practical’.

[...]

Subjects: Human Resource Management.


Reference entries

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.