Protection of Employment (Exceptional Collective Redundancies and Related Matters) Act 2007

Hearings, and giving of opinions, by Labour Court.

8.— (1) Within 16 days of receiving a request under section 7 , the Labour Court shall—

(a) hold a hearing into the matter, and

(b) either—

(i) issue to the Minister its opinion whether the proposed collective redundancies are exceptional collective redundancies, or

(ii) report to the Minister that, by reason of subsection (2), it is unable to issue an opinion, specifying in the report the circumstances attracting the operation of that subsection.

(2) The Court may not issue an opinion under subsection (1) unless it is satisfied that, in relation to the relevant proposal—

(a) the party from which the reference to the Panel was received has unsuccessfully sought to resolve the matter through local engagement, that is, all or any of the following:

(i) established dispute-resolution procedures;

(ii) procedures in place, or availed of by custom or usual practice, in the employment concerned;

(iii) ordinary consultative procedures,

(b) that party has acted reasonably and has not acted in a manner that, in the opinion of the Court, has frustrated the possibility of agreement to restructuring, or other changes, necessary to secure the viability of the business of the employer and, as a consequence, the best possible levels of employment and conditions, and

(c) no industrial action, on the part of that party, is current.

(3) For the purposes of this Part, section 21 of the Industrial Relations Act 1946 has effect as if in subsection (1) of that section “and under Part 2 of the Protection of Employment (Exceptional Collective Redundancies and Related Matters) Act 2007” were inserted after “for the purposes of any proceedings before it under this Act”.

(4) No appeal shall lie from an opinion given by the Labour Court under this section, but nothing in this section affects the power of the Employment Appeals Tribunal to make a decision on any question referred to it under section 39 of the Redundancy Payments Act 1967 .

(5) The Minister shall, within 7 working days of receiving an opinion from the Labour Court under subsection (1), notify affected parties, by such means as he considers appropriate, of the giving of the opinion and its content.