Arbitration and Independent Appeals


Arbitration involves an independent and impartial person called an arbitrator (acting alone or chairing a panel) being appointed by the Labour Relations Agency to make a decision on a dispute. This decision is based on the evidence presented by the parties to that dispute.

Arbitration is entirely voluntary. All parties to the dispute must agree to go to arbitration. The parties should also agree in advance that they will abide by the arbitrator’s decision.

The booklet ‘Arbitration explained’ explains the range of arbitration services available from the Agency. To download click here or on the image below.

 arbitration explained image 2

Independent Appeals

The Agency provides a service to facilitate a range of independent appeals (mainly grievance, bullying / harassment and discipline). The appeal service includes education, libraries, local government, voluntary organisations, and other public services and bodies in accordance with procedures agreed between employers and trade unions.

In education appeals include teaching and non teaching staff in schools, Education Authority staff, lecturers, and non teaching staff in further education.

For further information please contact the Arbitration Secretary at the Agency.

See also Agency mediation services

Details on appointed Arbitrator/Independent Appeal Chairpersons

Further information and help

If you require further information or help with this publication please contact us.

Individual Conciliation

Collective Conciliation


Telephone Enquiry Point

The Agency’s Enquiry Point is available to employers, employees, trade unions and others. Enquiry Point advisors provide information and advice on a wide range of employment matters. The Enquiry Point is also an important contact point for identifying circumstances, or clients, who would benefit from being referred to other Agency services.

The Enquiry Point provides clear, confidential, independent and impartial advice to assist the caller in resolving issues in the workplace.

While the advisors cannot provide a legal opinion they can help callers gain a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities as well as identifying possible options to help resolve their issues.

028 9032 1442

Monday - Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm

Contact Us

Please note that we cannot deal with employment-related enquiries by e-mail. To receive information or advice about an employment-related issue, please telephone our Helpline on Belfast 90 321442 where an officer will speak with you directly about your query. Please note that the Agency can arrange the services of an interpreter if required.

If you have an employment relations issue in Great Britain please contact the ACAS Helpline on 0300 123 1100 .

For all non-employment related queries or questions please fill in the box below.