Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Questions (139)

Maurice Quinlivan


139. Deputy Maurice Quinlivan asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the number of persons waiting for a Workplace Relations Commission hearing by the number of months waiting; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27042/19]

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Written answers (Question to Business)

The Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) was established on 1 October 2015 and is the single body with statutory responsibility for investigation and adjudication of complaints at first instance under a wide range of employment rights, equality and industrial relations legislation.

Some 90% of cases are processed from receipt to hearing and decision in less than six months where no requests for postponements are received, where all parties are available, and where submissions are received in a timely manner.

For example, some 20% of all complaints already scheduled for hearing subsequently require postponement due to the diary unavailability of one, or both, parties, or where a party is suffering from long-term illness. Other impacting factors include situations where representatives have sought deferral of the hearing pending; the complaint is in mediation; there are ongoing criminal proceedings, etc.

The WRC has 2,119 complaint applications currently awaiting hearing. This encompasses those: in registration; date assigned and awaiting hearing; postponement granted and new agreed date awaited; returned by mediator for a hearing date post unsuccessful mediation; and large volume of cases in mediation with the potential to be re-entered for adjudication.


Number of Complaint Applications

<3 months


3-6 months


6-9 months


9-12 months


12 months +




The WRC medium-term goal is to process the majority of complaints in less than six months and, in ideal situations, all complaints in less than nine months. Currently, the median time period between receipt of complaint and issue of decision is 9 months.

In addition to the cases listed above, the WRC has in recent months received a large volume of individual complaints relating to the same matter as a result of a Belgian court judgement on the Organisation of Working time. The WRC is actively working with the parties to identify an appropriate case management approach.