What We Do

Employee Involvement Legislation

The Industrial Relations Section is responsible for certain employee involvement legislation.

Employee Involvement in the Workplace (information and consultation/participation)

The Industrial Relations Section is responsible for the following employee involvement legislation:

European Communities (Transnational Information and Consultation of Employees Act 1996) (Amendment) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 380 of 2011);

Employees (Provision of Information and Consultation) Act 2006

The purpose of the Act, which came into operation from 24 July 2006, is to provide for the establishment of a general framework setting out minimum requirements for the right to information and consultation of employees in undertakings with at least 50 employees. The Act applies to:

  • Undertakings with at least 150 employees from 4 September 2006
  • Undertakings with at least 100 employees from 23 March 2007
  • Undertakings with at least 50 employees from 23 March 2008

A copy of the Commencement Order (S.I. 382 of 2006) can be accessed here. The Explanatory Booklet complements S.I. No 132 of 2008 Industrial Relations Act 1990 (Code Of Practice On Information And Consultation) (Declaration) Order 2008.

Other useful information is contained in the NUIG research entitled 'Organisational Change and Employee Information and Consultation'.

European Company Statute (employee involvement aspects)

The European Company statute is an EU legal instrument that gives companies with commercial interests in more than one Member State the option of forming a European Company (or “SE”), the objective of which is to make it easier for such companies to operate across the EU.

Use of the European Company Statute framework is optional.

The employee involvement aspects of the Statute are dealt with by the Industrial Relations Section, and are set out in the European Communities (European Public Limited – Liability Company) (Employee Involvement) Regulations 2006 (S.I No. 623 of 2006). The employee involvement Regulations transposes EU Directive 2001/86/EC into Irish law. S.I. No. 21 of 2007 and S.I. No.22 of 2007, dealing with the company law aspects of the Statute, are the responsibility of the Company Law Section of the Department.

European Cooperative Society Statute (employee involvement aspects)

The European Cooperative Society Statute is an EU legal instrument that enables the establishment of a European Cooperative Society (to be known as an “SCE”), the objective of which is to make it easier for cooperatives to operate across the EU. Use of the European Cooperative Society framework is optional.

The employee involvement aspects of the Statute are dealt with by the Industrial Relations Section, and are set out in the European Communities (European Cooperative Society) (Employee Involvement) Regulations 2007 (S.I No. 259 of 2007). The employee involvement Regulations transposes EU Directive 2003/72/EC into Irish law. A separate Regulation dealing with the company law aspects of the Statute is the responsibility of the Company Law section of the Department.

Worker Participation (State Enterprises) Acts 1977 and 1988

The Industrial Relations Section monitors the implementation of the Worker Participation Acts.

The purpose of the Worker Participation (State Enterprises) Act 1977, is to provide board level participation of workers in certain enterprises through the election of employees for appointment to the board of directors.

The purpose of the Worker Participation (State Enterprises) Act 1988, is to facilitate the introduction of sub board participative arrangements in a broad range of State enterprise, by agreement between the enterprise and the employee interests. A number of associated statutory instruments can be accessed on the Irish Statute website.

European Works Councils (Transnational Information and Consultation of Employees)

The Transnational Information and Consultation of Employees Act 1996, No. 20 of 1996, transposes EU Directive 94/45/EC into Irish law. The Act provides for the establishment of a European Works Council or a procedure in community-scale undertakings and community-scale groups of undertakings for the purposes of informing and consulting employees. Community-scale undertakings are large multi-nationals with at least 1,000 employees across the member states and with at least 150 employees in each of at least two Member States.

EU Directive 94/45/EC was extended to the UK by EU Directive 97/74/EC (transposed into Irish law by S.I No. 386 of 1999) and was adapted by reason of the accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the European Community by EU Directive 2006/109/EC, transposed by S.I No. 599 of 2007.

Directive 2009/38/EC revises Directive 94/45/EC and repeals the other two Directives referred to above. It was transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Transnational Information and Consultation of Employees Act 1996) (Amendment) Regulations 2011 (SI No 380 of 2011). The Regulations came into effect on 13 July 2011.

Cross - Border Mergers Regulations – employee participation

The Industrial Relations Unit is responsible for the employee participation aspects of the European Communities (Cross - Border Mergers) Regulations 2008 (S.I No. 157 of 2008). The Company Law Section of the Department is responsible for the other provisions of the Regulations, which transposed EU Directive 2005/56/EC. This Directive aims to facilitate cross-border mergers between limited liability companies in the European Union. The intention is to reduce the cost of such operations, to guarantee their legal certainty and to offer this option to the maximum number of companies.