Answer ... Any disagreements between the parties, including regarding cause for termination, are often initially dealt with through out-of-court negotiations either between the parties directly or between the employer and the employees’ union. However, out-of-court negotiations are not mandatory.
The ordinary courts have jurisdiction over all disputes. However, if the employment is covered by a collective bargaining agreement and the employee is a member of the trade union which is party to the relevant collective bargaining agreement, the Labour Court and the industrial tribunals have sole jurisdiction over the matter.
The city courts are composed of one judge, whereas the High Court consists of three judges. Typically, at least five judges hear cases in the Supreme Court. The industrial tribunals are typically chaired by a justice of the Supreme Court and two or three expert assessors from the trade unions and employers’ organisations which are also part of the tribunal.
Arbitration is seldom provided for in employment contracts, and only in agreements with top executives.
Answer ... Outside the applicable provisions of collective bargaining agreements, no specific procedure applies. Conciliation is mandatory only if the applicable rules in a collective bargaining agreement so provide. Most such agreements do include specific procedural conciliation requirements in order for a case to be brought before the Labour Court or the industrial tribunals.
In cases brought before the Labour Court or the industrial tribunals, all expenses are covered by the trade unions; whereas before the ordinary courts, a court fee – which is calculated based on the financial value of the claim raised – is payable by the claimant.
Currently, case processing before the ordinary courts is lengthy: it takes between 12 and 18 months from submission of the claim before the actual court hearing is conducted. Case processing before the industrial tribunals is somewhat more expedient, but can vary from three to 12 months, and in some cases even more.