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Employment Disputes: Finding Solutions

February 15, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 147

When you are in the middle of an employment dispute there are several steps you can take to resolve this process successfully. Ignoring problems within the work place will not make them go away and it often just leads to larger problems in the future. They can cause delays that create frustration, stress and also productivity, legal and cost consequences. In some cases the process of resolving the problem can cause the breakdown of relationship and can cause an employee to claim unfair treatment, which is why it is vital to use the right process.

When facing an employment dispute you should always attempt to resolve the situation yourself before seeking mediation help or going to the Employment Relations Authority. You need to be clear about the facts and talk with each other. Clarify whether there is actually a problem and if so, what it is exactly and consider what assistance is needed to help resolve the problem for both parties. You also need to be clear on what the law is regarding the situation and what the employment agreement states. Mediation is used when both parties cannot come to an agreement or resolution without outside help. You may need to seek mediation assistance and this is the use of an independent individual to facilitate discussions between parties and to help them to identify issues and potential solutions. The intentions of a mediator are for the parties to find a solution to the problem by agreement. It is important to remember that a mediator is not advocating either side. They are committed only to the course of problem resolution.

Sometimes parties are not able to come to an agreement through a mediator and this is where more information and assistance will hopefully lead to a settlement. If no settlement is agreed upon then both parties will need to manage their remaining differences or refer the matter with the Employment Relations Authority or the Employment Court. The Employment Relations Authority is an autonomous organization and its role is to resolve employment disputes by looking at the facts and making a judgment based on the merits of the case and the law. It examines employment relationship problems and has the power to make legally binding decisions on these matters. If they find that a personal grievance has been established the Authority can order compensation covering lost wages and other benefits, humiliation, loss of dignity and injury to feelings.

Phil Butler and Associates Ltd is one of Canterbury's leading employment law advocacy firms. Since 1992 we have been providing advice and representation to employees and employers on employment agreements, employment problems (such as personal grievances, employment disputes, harassment, redundancy, unfair dismissals & workplace bullying) and the laws governing them.

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