The CCMA is a statutory body which was set up by the Labour Relations Act. The CCMA has structured itself with a set of rules so as to enable the parties to use the CCMA effectively. These rules are to be interpreted and applied in a spirit that will enhance and facilitate the work of the Commission. In essence, these rules have to be administered in a fair and structured manner and they must be used to make it easier for the parties to both approach and to implement labour peace. These rules are contained in the Labour Relations Act and must be carefully read and implemented by every single user of the CCMA. It is no excuse to state that you are a lay person as anyone who wishes to use the CCMA must have a working knowledge of the rules and regulations.

Firstly, one must understand what forms have to be filled in, how they should be filled in and where they must be sent. The Registrar of the CCMA Western Cape is at 78 Darling Street, Cape Town, 8001 on telephone number (021) 469-0111 and telefax number (021) 465-7193/7. The Registrar expects an applicant to fully complete LRA form 7.11. The completion of this form marks the start of the proceedings. This form must be properly served on the Respondent (Employer). Although the CCMA is not a Court, it has the authority and power to ensure that its rules are properly followed and implemented. The CCMA must attempt to resolve any disputes referred to in terms of the Labour Relations Act, firstly through Conciliation and thereafter, the Arbitration. The CCMA’s other functions including the establishment of workplace forums, to try and facilitate and to publish information and statistics about its own activities.

Often the CCMA assists any party to a dispute to obtain legal advice, assistance or representation. The CCMA has an advisory function regarding the procedure to be followed in terms of the LRA. In certain instances, and upon request, the CCMA may provide employees, employers, trade unions and employers’ organisations training. This training could be with regard to collective bargaining structures, workplace forums and the prevention and resolution of disputes. The CCMA’s offices are open every workday, Monday to Friday, from 08h30 to 16h30. The documents referred to above can only be filed during those working hours. Documents may be faxed to the CCMA and this constitutes proper service. The offices are not open on public holidays as defined in the Public Holidays Act.

The referral of a dispute in the allegation of an alleged unfair dismissal must take place within 30 days after the commission of the dispute. This is calculated on the basis of the first day to be excluded and the last day to be included. The computation of the number of days is calculated by all seven days of the week being counted. If the last day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or Public Holiday, or on a day during the period 16 December to 7 January, then that last day is excluded and the period is extended to the next day that does not fall on a Saturday, Sunday or a Public Holiday.

Articlesource – Cape Labour: www.capelabour.co.za/blog/commission-for-conciliation-mediation-and-arbitration-ccma-rules.html

Cape Labour – Bernard Reisner

W.Tel no.: 021 423 3959
Fax: 021 423 2105
Cell: 082 433 8714
E-mail: bernard@capelabour.co.za
Website: www.capelabour.co.za

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