The following Employment Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
A member of a trade union has a number of remedies at their disposal if they are aggrieved that they have been disciplined or expelled by their union:
there is a statutory right against 'unjustifiable' discipline, as defined
there is a statutory right against expulsion from a trade union save on specified grounds
An individual union member may, furthermore, wish, alternatively or additionally, to have recourse to the common law (see Practice Note: Discipline by trade unions—Common law right).
Rights arising under the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 (TULR(C)A 1992) may be asserted before an employment tribunal. Common law claims may be taken to the High Court or County Court. A union member may alternatively complain to the certification officer that there has been a breach, or threatened breach, of a union rule relating to disciplinary proceedings by the union (including expulsion).
See, generally: Summary to discipline and expulsion: statute: Harvey on Industrial Relations and Employment Law .
The time limits provided for in TULR(C)A 1992, s 66(2) apply in relation to an ‘individual who claims that he has been unjustifiably disciplined by a trade union’ in the context of the statutory right against 'unjustifiable' discipline, as defined in TULR(C)A 1992, s 64.
'Discipline' is widely defined for the purposes of this statutory right. Broadly, a person is disciplined if 'a determination is made'
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