EQUAL STATUS ACT 2000

Redress in respect of prohibited conduct.

21

21.—(1) A person who claims that prohibited conduct has been directed against him or her may, subject to this section, seek redress by referring the case to the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ].

F39 [ (1A) If the grounds for such a claim as is referred to in subsection (1) arise

( a ) on the gender ground, or

( b ) in any other circumstances (including circumstances amounting to victimisation) to which the Gender Goods and Services Directive is relevant,

then, subject to subsections (2) to (7) and (8) to (11) , the person making the claim may seek redress by referring the case to the Circuit Court instead of referring the case to the ]Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] under subsection (1) (and, if the case is referred to the Circuit Court, no further appeal lies, other than an appeal to the High Court on a point of law). ]

(2) Before seeking redress under this section the complainant

( a ) shall, within 2 months after the prohibited conducted is alleged to have occurred, or, where more than one incident of prohibited conduct is alleged to have occurred, within 2 months after the last such occurrence, notify the respondent in writing of

(i) the nature of the allegation,

(ii) the complainant s intention, if not satisfied with the respondent s response to the allegation, F40 [ to seek redress under this Act ] ,

and

( b ) may in that notification, with a view to assisting the complainant in deciding whether to refer the case to the ] Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] F39 [ or, as the case may be, the Circuit Court ] , question the respondent in writing so as to obtain material information and the respondent may, if the respondent so wishes, reply to any such questions.

F41 [ (2A) For the purposes of subsection (2) the date of notification is the date on which the notification is sent, unless it is shown that the notification was not received by the respondent. ]

F40 [ (3) ( a ) On application by a complainant the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] F39 [ or, as the case may be, the Circuit Court ] may

(i) for reasonable cause, direct that in relation to the complainant subsection (2) shall have effect as if for the reference to 2 months there were substituted a reference to such period not exceeding 4 months as is specified in the direction, or

(ii) exceptionally, where satisfied that it is fair and reasonable in the particular circumstance of the case to do so direct that subsection (2) shall not apply in relation to the complainant to the extent specified in the direction,

and, where such a direction is given, this Part shall have effect accordingly.

  ( b ) In deciding whether to give a direction under paragraph (a)(ii) the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] F39 [ or, as the case may be, the Circuit Court ] shall have regard to all the relevant circumstances, including

(i) the extent to which the respondent is, or is likely to be, aware of the circumstances in which the prohibited conduct occurred, and

(ii) the extent of any risk of prejudice to the respondent s ability to deal adequately with the complaint. ]

(4) The F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] F42 [ or, as the case may be, the Circuit Court shall not investigate a case unless the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] or the Circuit Court, as the case may be, ] is satisfied either that the respondent has replied to the notification or that at least one month has elapsed after it was sent to the respondent.

(5) The Minister may by regulations prescribe the form to be used by a complainant and respondent for the purposes of subsection (2) .

F40 [ (6) ( a ) Subject to subsections (3)(a)(ii) and (7) , a claim for redress in respect of prohibited conduct may not be referred under this section after the end of the period of 6 months from the date of the occurrence of the prohibited conduct to which the case relates or, as the case may be, the date of its most recent occurrence.

  ( b ) On application by a complainant the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] F39 [ or, as the case may be, the Circuit Court ] may, for reasonable cause, direct that in relation to the complainant paragraph (a) shall have effect as if for the reference to a period of 6 months there were substituted a reference to such period not exceeding 12 months as is specified in the direction; and, where such a direction is given, this Part shall have effect accordingly.

(7) Where a delay by a complainant in referring a case under this Act is due to any misrepresentation by the respondent, subsection (6)(a) shall apply as if the references to the date of occurrence of prohibited conduct were references to the date on which the misrepresentation came to the complainant s notice. ]

F41 [ (7A) F43 [ ( a ) Not later than 42 days from the date of a decision of the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] on an application by a complainant for an extension of time under subsection (3) or (6) , the complainant or respondent may appeal against the decision to the Circuit Court on notice to the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] specifying the grounds of the appeal. ]

( b ) On the appeal the Court may affirm, quash or vary the decision.

( c ) No further appeal lies, other than an appeal to the High Court on a point of law.

( d ) Unless otherwise agreed by the complainant and respondent, effect shall not be given to a decision of the F38 [ Director of the Workplace Relations Commission ] on such an application until

(i) the period of 42 days mentioned in paragraph ( a ) has expired, or

(ii) any appeal against it has been determined,

whichever first occurs. ]

(8) Information is material information for the purposes of this section if it is

( a ) information as to the respondent s reasons for doing or omitting to do any relevant act and as to any practices or procedures material to any such act,

( b ) information, other than confidential information, about the treatment of other persons who stand in relation to the respondent in the same or a similar position as the complainant, or

( c ) other information which is not confidential information and which, in the circumstances of the case in question, it is reasonable for the complainant to require.

(9) In subsection (8) confidential information means any information which relates to a particular individual, which can be identified as so relating and to the disclosure of which that individual does not agree.

(10) This section is without prejudice to the other provisions of this Act relating to the obtaining of information.

F41 [ (11) For the purposes of this section prohibited conduct occurs

( a ) if the act constituting it extends over a period, at the end of the period,

( b ) if it arises by virtue of a provision which operates over a period, throughout the period. ]

Annotations:

Amendments:

F38

Substituted (1.10.2015) by Workplace Relations Act 2015 (16/2015), s. 84(1)(b), S.I. No. 410 of 2015, subject to transitional provision in subs. (2).

F39

Inserted (20.07.2008) by Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2008 (14/2008), s. 76(c)(i), (ii) and (iv), S.I. No. 274 of 2008.

F40

Substituted (18.07.2004) by Equality Act 2004 (24/2004), s. 54(a), (c) and (d), commenced on enactment.

F41

Inserted (18.07.2004) by Equality Act 2004 (24/2004), s. 54(b), (e) and (f), commenced on enactment.

F42

Substituted (20.07.2008) by Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2008 (14/2008), s. 76(c)(iii), S.I. No. 274 of 2008.

F43

Substituted (2.08.2011) by Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2011 (23/2011), s. 27, commenced on enactment.