SECTION 28(1), ORGANISATION OF WORKING TIME ACT, 1997
ROYAL LIVER ASSURANCE LTD
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Appeal of Rights Commissioners Decision WT18454/04/JH.
2. The worker concerned had been employed by the Company since August 1978. Due to consolidation and reorganisation the Galway office where the worker was employed, was closed in February 2003 and administration staff, including the worker, were made redundant.
All staff being made redundant were requested to use up accrued holiday. The worker concerned had 28 days accrued annual leave and was requested to take 10 days in the period 20/01/03 to 31/01/03. She refused to do so. On termination of employment she received payment for 18 days outstanding leave along with her redundancy payment.
In July 2004 a Rights Commissioner investigation into the matter of withheld holiday pay was heard. Her decision issued on 4th August, 2004, as follows:-
"....... I decide therefore that reasonable cause does not exist such as to extend the six month time limit as set out in Section 27(5) of the Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997."
The worker appealed the decision to the Labour Court on 14th September, 2004 in accordance with Section 28(1) of the Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997. The Court heard the appeal on the 1st December, 2004.
3. 1. The worker was unaware of the time limit in which she could bring a case to the Rights Commissioner.
4. 1.The worker lost her entitlement to payment for the 10 days leave when she refused to take the leave prior to her redundancy.
2. Neither the worker or her Union submitted a complaint during the six months set out in Section 7(4) of the Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997.
The Court cannot find any basis upon which the Court could conclude that the Rights Commissioner erred in her approach to this case. The claim is clearly out of time and reasonable cause has not been shown as to why the time limit should be extended.
Accordingly, the Court upholds the Rights Commissioner decision and the appeal is disallowed.
Having so decided the Court is of the view that the claimant has a genuine grievance in relation to the manner in which she was required to take leave prior to being made redundant. The Court would express the hope that the Company might make an appropriate proposal to the claimant which would address her grievance.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
13th December, 2004______________________
Enquiries concerning this Determination should be addressed to Madelon Geoghegan, Court Secretary.