Do employees have the right to be accompanied or represented at disciplinary and grievance meetings / hearings? What is the difference between ‘accompanied’ and ‘represented’ and what / who determines whether an employee has a right to be accompanied or represented?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 4 September 2012
Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

Employees have a statutory right to be accompanied where they are required or invited by their employer to attend disciplinary hearings which could result in:

  • a formal warning being issued;
  • the taking of some disciplinary action (i.e. suspension without pay, demotion or dismissal); and/or
  • the confirmation of a warning or some other form of disciplinary action (such as an appeal hearing).

Employees also have the right to be accompanied to a grievance hearing. There is no legal right for an employee to be accompanied to informal discussions, counselling sessions or investigatory meetings, although the employer may still allow it. The employee’s companion can either be a fellow colleague or

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 02/09/2015

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Arthur Cox. Contact telephone number is +44 28 9026 2673 or email

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