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Industrial Tribunals

Volume 168: debated on Monday 5 March 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will now increase the jurisdiction of industrial tribunals, so as to enable them to deal with claims for breaches of contracts of employment following dismissal.

We consulted widely on this issue last year. This showed overwhelming support for implementation. I have therefore decided that the necessary statutory instrument should be made as soon as practicable. This will mean that an employee making a complaint of unfair dismissal to an industrial tribunal will also be able to ask the tribunal to recover, for example, arrears of pay lost because he was dismissed without notice. At present separate proceedings have to be initiated in the civil courts to recover such damages.I have also decided that both the conditions set out in section 131(3) of the Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act 1978 should be required to be satisfied before an industrial tribunal can consider a claim. I am sure that the fact that it will be possible to settle simultaneously those contractual disputes between an employer and employee arising from dismissal will be welcomed by both sides.

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will bring forward legislation to extend the jurisdiction of industrial tribunals to enable them to determine claims for breach of contract arising from dismissals from employment.

We consulted widely on this issue last year. This showed overwhelming support for implementation. I have, therefore, decided that the necessary statutory instrument should be made as soon as practicable. This means that an employee making a complaint of unfair dismissal to an industrial tribunal will also be able to ask the tribunal to recover, for example, arrears of pay lost because he was dismissed without notice. At present separate proceedings have to be initiated in civil courts to recover such damages.I have also decided that both the conditions set out in section 131(3) of the Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act 1978 should be required to be satisfied before an industrial tribunal can consider a claim. I am sure that the fact that it will be possible to settle simultaneously those contractual disputes between an employer and employee arising from dismissal will be welcomed by both sides.