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Equal Pay Act 1970

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

2Disputes as to, and enforcement of requirement of equal treatment

(1)Any claim in respect of the operation of a term included in a woman's contract of employment or implied in her terms and conditions of employment as mentioned in section 1(3) above (in this section referred to as an " equal pay clause "), including a claim for arrears of remuneration or damages in respect of a failure to comply with an equal pay clause, may be referred to and determined by an industrial tribunal, and may be so referred either by the person making the claim or by the person against whom it is made.

(2)Where it appears to the Secretary of State that there may be a question whether the employer of any women is or has been failing to comply with their equal pay clauses, but that it is not reasonable to expect them to take steps to have the question determined, the question may be referred by him to an industrial tribunal and shall be dealt with as if the reference were of a claim by the women against the employer.

(3)Where it appears to the court in which any proceedings are pending that a claim or counter-claim in respect of the operation of an equal pay clause could more conveniently be disposed of separately by an industrial tribunal, the court may direct that the claim or counterclaim shall be struck out; and (without prejudice to the foregoing) where in proceedings before any court a question arises as to the operation of an equal pay clause, the court may on the application of any party to the proceedings or otherwise refer that question, or direct it to be referred by a party to the proceedings, to an industrial tribunal for determination by the tribunal, and may stay or sist the proceedings in the meantime.

(4)No claim in respect of the operation of an equal pay clause relating to a woman's employment shall be referred to an industrial tribunal otherwise than by virtue of subsection (3) above, if she has not been employed in the employment within the six months preceding the date of the reference.

(5)A woman shall not be entitled, in proceedings brought in respect of a failure to comply with an equal pay clause (including proceedings before an industrial tribunal), to be awarded any payment by way of arrears of remuneration or damages in respect of a time earlier than two years before the date on which the proceedings were instituted.

(6)Where a woman ought to be or to have been given equal treatment with a man as required by her equal pay clause, and he enjoys or has enjoyed by comparison with her any greater remuneration or other advantage, then it shall be for the woman's employer to show that this advantage is not the result of his terms and conditions of employment being in any respect more favourable than hers, but is genuinely due to a material difference (other than the difference of sex) between her case and his.

(7)In this section " industrial tribunal" means a tribunal established under section 12 of the Industrial Training Act 1964 ; and there shall be paid out of moneys provided by Parliament any additional amounts which by virtue of this section are so payable under section 12(3) of that Act, as amended by section 46(5) of the Redundancy Payments Act 1965.

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