Legal Advice for Industrial Action
If your business has been affected by industrial action, it’s vital that you get the specialist, professional legal advice you need to help resolve the dispute and get your business back to normal.
Our specialist team advises clients in different languages on a wide range of Employment Law matters. Call them on 0208 1111 911 or contact them through the website to discuss your circumstances with them.
What is Industrial Action?
Industrial action can happen when employees and their unions are unable to reach an agreement with their employer through negotiation. It is treated as a last resort and can include strikes, overtime bans or working to rule.
The Trade Union Act 2016 made it more difficult for industrial action to occur, by requiring a higher turnout of voters and a higher proportion of the workforce to vote in favour of the action than was previously required. The legislation was controversial, but was designed to make it harder to suspend important services such as transport.
Although industrial action is now more difficult to bring about, it can still occur. The legislation has also had the effect of making unions more likely to push harder in negotiations with employers and rally more support from their members. It is therefore still important for employers to maintain good relationships with unions as well as employees.
What can I do if my employees take Industrial Action?
Your employees must ensure that any Industrial Action they take is lawful. As members of a union, it is likely that they will already be well advised on this. So, by the time a decision is taken they will likely know that the action they are taking is lawful.
Dismissing employees for taking lawful industrial action is likely to amount to automatically unfair dismissal, which can cause greater problems in the long run. What typically happens as a result of industrial action though, is that:
- Employees are not paid for the period of industrial action
- Employees are typically not deemed to have breached their contract (which could result in dismissal if they did)
- Employees are not deemed to have broken their continuous service. However, their continuous service may be reduced by the length of time of the industrial action (which could affect their pension or severance pay in future).
If your employees do take any form of industrial action, it’s vital that you have the right legal support and knowledge on your side to help you through the process and to help maintain good relationships with your employers and their unions.
What other legal services might I need?
Like any business that depends heavily on its workforce, we recommend that advice on trade unions and industrial action forms part of a wider effort to ensure that your employment procedures remain fit for purpose over time. We can help with a wide range of Employment Law services including drafting of employment contracts, redundancy advice, TUPE advice, defending Employment Tribunal cases and more.
We can also advise you on Commercial Property, Dispute Resolution and many other Business Law services.
How do I get advice on Industrial Action and Trade Unions?
Call us on 0208 1111 911 or contact us through the website and we’ll discuss your requirements. The initial call is free and if we feel we can help you, we’ll recommend the best course of action and advise you of our fees before you decide to instruct us.