Ivan Israelstam

Arbitrator misconduct can and does occur in many different forms. Employers are able to take arbitrator decisions on review to the Labour Court, if they believe that the arbitrator has behaved irregularly. Read on to find out what behaviour would cause the Labour Court to overturn an arbitrator's award or ruling.

Many an employer has been caught napping at the CCMA because they ignored the document summoning them to appear. Although the notice of set down that the CCMA sends to employers is a relatively harmless looking document, employers ignore it at their financial peril.

A "labour law remedy? is the action, via formal order, that the CCMA, bargaining council, Labour Court, Labour Appeal Court or private arbitrator can take against the employer to correct an unfair labour practice or an unfair dismissal. Ivan Israelstam explains that employers should pay close attention to the remedy given as this can have a severe effect on the employer?s financial or operational circumstances.

"Codes of different types constitute a substantial part of labour legislation, therefore employers need to know these codes and understand their obligations under these codes," explains Ivan Israelstam. Labour legislation contains, amongst others, codes on retrenchment, picketing of strikers, sexual harassment and dismissal.

As the concept of "unfairness" is not defined in the Labour Relations Act (LRA) leaving employers Ivan Israelstam proposes that the act of an employer would be seen to be "unfair" in labour law if it infringes the employee's entrenched rights, is one-sided, unnecessary and/or inappropriate under the circumstances.

Over the past two weeks, Ivan Israelstam examined the labour law term 'unfair'. In this week's feature, he considers the 'fairness' debate in reference to the dismissal of illegal strikers.

The process of Con-Arb (conciliation and arbitration) is often used at the CCMA when dealing with labour disputes, explains Ivan Israelstem. The objective of con-arb is to cut down drastically the time period between conciliation and arbitration, and may also have the effect of forcing the parties to make every effort to settle the matter at conciliation.

There are six pieces of legislation that work together to protect the employee and her child from the day the employee falls pregnant until well after the birth of the child. Ivan Israelstam explains what the law expaects employers to do to look after their pregnant employees.

We have represented countless employers taken to court because a manager mishandled a shop floor grievance or disciplinary matter and the employee was unfairly dismissed. ln some cases, because the line manager mishandled the matter, the line manager gets fired for incurring unnecessary legal costs!



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