The Law of Ukraine

On the Procedure for Settlement of Collective Labor Disputes (Conflicts)

Date of Entry into Force:
March 31, 1998

The Law determines legal and organizational grounds for functioning of the system of measures to settle collective labor disputes (conflicts) and aims at assisting cooperation between the parties to social and labor relations in the process of settling collective labor disputes (conflicts) that arose between them.

Norms of the Law shall apply to hired employees and organizations established thereby, according to the legislation, for representation and protection of their interests and to owners of companies, institutions and organizations, regardless of their form of ownership, type of activity and sector of the economy, as well as to organizations of owners.

A collective labor dispute (conflict) is understood as differences that arose between the parties to social and labor relations with respect to:
) establishing new or changing the existing social and economic labor environment and production environment;
b) concluding or changing the collective agreement or contract;
c) fulfilling the collective agreement, contract or their specific provisions;
d) failing to comply with requirements of the legislation on labor.

Parties to a collective labor dispute (conflict) shall be:
- at a production level: hired employees of a company, institution or organization, or their structural departments, or a primary trade union or other organization authorized by hired employees, and the owner of a company, institution or organization or a body or a representative authorized thereby;
- at a sector and territorial levels: hired employees of companies, institutions or organizations in one or several sectors (professions) or administrative and territorial units, or trade unions, their associations or other bodies authorized by these hired employees, and owners, associations of owners or bodies or representatives authorized thereby;
- at the national level: hired employees in one or several sectors (professions) or trade unions or their associations or bodies authorized by hired employees, and owners, associations of owners or bodies authorized thereby on the territory of the majority of administrative and territorial units of Ukraine.

The owner or a body (representative) authorized thereby shall consider requirements of hired employees, categories of hired employees, a collective of employees or a trade union and inform their representatives about their decision within a three-day period from the day when they received such requirements.

The general term for considering requirements and making decisions (taking into account the time for delivery) should not exceed thirty days from the day when such requirements were received by the owner or a body (representative) authorized thereby until the moment when hired employees or a trade union receive a notification from the owner or a relevant higher management body on the decision they have made. The decision of the owner or a relevant higher management body shall be presented in writing.

A collective labor dispute (conflict) shall arise from the moment when:
- an authorized representative body of hired employees, a category of hired employees, a collective of employees, or a trade union received from the owner or a body authorized thereby a notification on a full or partly refusal to satisfy collective requirements and adopted a decision on disagreeing with the decision of the owner or a body (representative) authorized thereby.
- the period for considering requirements envisaged by the present Law expired and there was no reply from the owner.

A conciliatory commission is a body designated to produce a decision that can satisfy both parties to a collective labor dispute (conflict) and it consists of representatives of both parties. A conciliatory commission is established upon the initiative of one of the parties: at the production level within a three-day period, at a sector or territorial level within a five-day period, at the national level within a ten-day period from the moment when a collective labor dispute (conflict) arose. It shall consist of an equal number of representatives from both parties.

Parties to a collective labor dispute (conflict) shall provide a conciliatory commission with the information necessary for negotiations. The decision of a conciliatory commission shall be registered in a protocol and shall have equal power for both parties and shall be implemented according to the procedure and within the period established by this decision.

A labor arbitration body is a body that consists of experts, specialists and other entities involved by the parties and adopts a decision on the essence of such labor dispute (conflict). A labor arbitration body shall be established upon the initiative of one of the parties or an independent mediator within a three-day period in case:
- a conciliatory commission failed to make an agreed decision to resolve such a collective labor dispute (conflict);
- a collective labor dispute (conflict) arose with respect to fulfillment of the collective agreement, contract or their specific provisions or failure to fulfill requirements of the legislation on labor.

A labor arbitration body can also include Peoples Deputies of Ukraine, representatives of government bodies and local self-government bodies, and other entities. The decision of a labor arbitration body on settling a collective labor dispute (conflict) shall be mandatory for implementation, provided the parties have preliminary agreed so.

None of the parties to a collective labor dispute (conflict) can avoid participation in the reconciliatory procedures. Parties to a collective labor dispute (conflict), a conciliatory commission and a labor arbitration body shall use all possibilities not prohibited by the legislation to settle such a collective labor dispute (conflict).

For the purpose of helping to improve labor relations and preventing the emergence of labor collective disputes (conflicts), predicting them and helping to resolve them in good time, and providing mediation for the settlement of such disputes (conflicts), the President of Ukraine shall establish the National Service for Mediation and Reconciliation. Decisions of the National Service for Mediation and Reconciliation shall bear the form of recommendations. The National Service for Mediation and Reconciliation shall be financed at the expense of the State Budget of Ukraine. A Provision on the National Service for Mediation and Reconciliation shall be approved by the President of Ukraine.

Strike is a temporary collective voluntary suspension of work by employees (failure to attend and fulfill job duties) of a company, institution or organization (structural department) for the purpose of settling a collective labor dispute (conflict). Strike shall be used as an ultimate measure (when all other possibilities were exhausted) to settle a collective labor dispute (conflict) due to the refusal of the owner or a body (representative) authorized thereby to satisfy requirements of hired employees or a body authorized thereby, a trade union, an association of trade unions or a body authorized thereby. Nobody can be forced to participate or not to participate in a strike. Strike at a company shall be headed by a body (individual) that is determined through a general meeting (conference) of hired employees when they adopt the decision on announcing such a strike.

The Law enumerates grounds and cases when strike will be considered illegal or when strikes are forbidden.

Individuals guilty of the emergence of collective labor disputes (conflicts) shall bear disciplinary, civil and legal, criminal, or administrative responsibility according to the legislation.
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