INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Flood
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. 1. 10% Increase on pension 2. Pension analogue.
2. The claim is on behalf of the worker who retired as Chief Executive of An Bord Trachtala (ABT) in 1996. The worker's retirement pension is paid by Forfás. His first claim is that his pension does not reflect a 10% increase in pay he received while in employment as Chief Executive of ABT. The second claim is that he can no longer benefit in terms of his pension from Review Body awards because the post of Chief Executive of ABT no longer exists. The dispute was referred to the Labour Relations Commission and a conciliation conference took place. As the parties did not reach agreement, the dispute was referred the Labour Court on the 25th of April, 2001, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relation Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 27th of July, 2001. Before the hearing commenced, Forfas raised the question of whether The Labour Court was the right forum to hear the case. It claimed that the Attorney General had advised that the Court had no jurisdiction to deal with the issue. The Court sought the Attorney General's advise. The following is the Court's recommendation:-
The Court was informed by the respondents that they had discussed the case with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, the Department of Finance, and the Attorney General.
They informed the Court that the Attorney General had advised that the Labour Court had no jurisdiction to deal with this case. There was also a dispute on whether the Labour Relations Commission had the employer's agreement to refer the case to the Labour Court.
The Court adjourned the hearing to seek the Attorney General's advice as to whether it had jurisdiction to hear the claimant's case.
The Court has now been advised that it is "entitled to investigate a matter which arose prior to an individual's retirement and which was referred to the Labour Relations Commission or Labour Courtpriorto the individual's retirement."
In accepting this decision, the Court has a major concern that a large number of people will have no redress in situations of dispute between themselves and their previous employer, even in circumstances where commitments made are not subsequently honoured.
The Court, therefore, strongly recommends that a mechanism be put in place to address situations as outlined above.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
8th November, 2001______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.