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Employment Relations Act 1999

Part V: Derecognition where recognition automatic

94.Part V provides for a different derecognition process to apply in cases where unions have been ‘automatically’ recognised on the grounds of having greater than 50% membership of the bargaining unit (i.e. without a ballot). Applications for derecognition of an automatically-recognised union may be accepted only three or more years after recognition.

95.Paragraphs 122-124 provide that the derecognition procedure applies to unions recognised as the result of a CAC declaration under paragraph 22 or 87 whether the method for collective bargaining is voluntarily agreed, imposed by the CAC or agreed as a variation on a CAC imposed method.

96.Paragraph 125 provides that derecognition may not take place until three or more years after a CAC declaration of recognition was made.

97.Paragraphs 127-133 provide for an employer to request a union to end bargaining arrangements on the grounds that fewer than half of the workers constituting the bargaining unit are members of the union. (These paragraphs are similar to paragraphs 104-111, which deal with a standard request for derecognition.)

98.Paragraphs 127 and 129 contain general procedural requirements for applications to the CAC under this Part.

99.Paragraph 128 provides that the derecognition procedure is to end if the parties agree to end the bargaining arrangements within ten working days of the request. If the union agrees to negotiate, then the parties can extend the ten working day negotiation period by mutual consent. If the parties agree that the union should remain recognised, it is sufficient for them to take no further action. The CAC would not be asked to hold a ballot under paragraph 106 or 107 (which are applied by reference), and the bargaining arrangements would remain in force. If the union either does not respond to or rejects the request before the end of the negotiation period, the employer may apply to the CAC to hold a secret ballot to decide whether the union should be derecognised.

100.Paragraphs 130 and 131 provide that, if the CAC is to hold a ballot to decide whether a union should be derecognised, it must first be satisfied that a majority of the workers who make up the bargaining unit are not members of the recognised union, and that it had accepted no application for derecognition under Part IV or V in the previous 3 years. If a majority of the workers are union members, the automatic recognition will remain in force and the CAC will take no further action. The CAC has 10 working days in which to decide.

101.Paragraph 133 provides that if a ballot is to be held on derecognition the same derecognition ballot procedure as in Part IV should be followed.

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