Introduction to this document

Compulsory trade union recognition flow chart 1

This flow chart may be used when a compulsory recognition request is received to assess whether the request is valid. This is a complex area and the flow chart is for general guidance only. Specialist advice may be needed where a recognition request is received.


Statutory recognition

The statutory recognition procedures apply to employers with 21 or more workers and to independent unions. Despite the existence of the statutory recognition procedures, relatively few unions have sought to make use of them, and it has been far more common for employers and unions to favour voluntary recognition. For unions, one key drawback of the statutory recognition procedure is that when a union has been recognised under it, collective bargaining is likely to take place around a much narrower set of issues. For employers, the statutory processes are complex and unwieldy. Many employers would prefer to agree with a union the terms of a voluntary recognition arrangement rather than have a heavily regulated statutory recognition arrangement imposed on them.  If a voluntary agreement has been reached, use our Trade Union Recognition Agreement.



compulsory trade union recognition flow chart 1

05 Oct 2016
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