The Labour Court provides an industrial relations service to consider disputes that parties have been unable to resolve themselves or with the assistance of the Workplace Relations Commission. Such disputes can be referred to the Court for an ‘opinion’ in the form of a Recommendation of the Court which is not binding on the parties.
The Labour Court:
(a) investigates trade disputes under the Industrial Relations Acts, 1946 to 2015
(b) investigates, at the request of the Minister for Enterprise Trade and Employment, trade disputes affecting the public interest, or conduct an enquiry into a trade dispute of special importance and report on its findings
(c) hears appeals of Adjudication Officer’s recommendations/decisions made under the Industrial Relations Acts
(d) establishes Joint Labour Committees and decide on questions concerning their operation
(e) registers Joint Industrial Councils
(f) investigates complaints of breaches of codes of practice made under the Industrial Relations Act, 1990 (following consideration of the complaint by the Workplace Relations Commission)
(g) gives its opinion as to the interpretation of a code of practice made under the Industrial Relations Act, 1990
(h) investigates disputes (where negotiating arrangements are not in place) under the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act, 2001 as amended by the Industrial Relations (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2004 and the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2015
(I) registers employment agreements
(j) examines the terms and conditions of employment in a sector pursuant to Section 14 of the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2015
(k) grants exemptions from the obligation to pay the remuneration that would otherwise be payable under a Sectoral Employment Order (SEO) pursuant to Section 21 of the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2015
Part IV of the Labour Court Rules 2020 relate to the procedures to be used in Industrial Relations cases referred to the Court.