Is it acceptable to allow a Union Rep to speak on an employee’s behalf in a disciplinary hearing, when I would prefer to hear directly from the employee?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 1 October 2013
Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

The role of the union representative or companion at a disciplinary hearing is often misunderstood. The LRA Code does say that it is good practice to allow the companion to participate as fully as possible in the hearing.

However, despite common belief, companions do not have the right to answer questions which are put to an employee during a disciplinary hearing. The companion is permitted to address the disciplinary hearing (including putting the employee's case, summing up, and responding on the employee's behalf to any view expressed at the hearing) and to confer with the employee during the hearing.

However, there is no right to answer questions on behalf of the employee - the employee

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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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