There are three different types of conciliation depending on what stage any claim is at and where it is being brought. These are early conciliation, pre-claim conciliation and standard conciliation. Our Legal Services Department can assist with all of these.
Early conciliation is now a mandatory requirement, within England, Wales and Scotland, that a claimant has to complete before bringing virtually any claim at the Employment Tribunal. The potential claimant has to contact Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) and notify them of all the possible respondents (who the claim may be brought against).
Pre-claim conciliation currently exists within Northern Ireland. This is similar to early conciliation in that it takes place prior to any claim being made but, unlike early conciliation, it is an entirely voluntary process. The LRA (Labour Relations Agency) will try and negotiate a settlement between the parties to avoid a claim being submitted. Our Legal Services Consultants can discuss this matter with you and carry out negotiations on your behalf.
Conciliation through Acas
Once contacted by the claimant, Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) will then discuss their issues with them and try to reach a negotiated settlement with the potential respondents if the potential claimant gives them permission to do so. Our Legal Services Consultants can carry out these negotiations on your behalf, discussing the potential case with you so that you are aware of the risks.
If a claim is submitted to Tribunal then there is a mandatory obligation on Acas or the Labour Relations Agency (LRA) to offer to conciliate and this option will remain open until the case is finally concluded. Our Legal Services Consultants will carry out negotiations on your behalf with Acas or the LRA as appropriate.
There is no obligation to take part in conciliation and you can choose not to enter into a negotiated settlement. Our Legal Services Consultants will discuss the options for settlement with you and will not enter into any settlement without your agreement. If you do not wish to settle the case, or if it cannot be resolved on suitable terms, then no conciliated agreement will be reached and our Legal Services Consultants will represent you at hearing.