Workplace Relations Act 2015
Powers of inspectors
27. (1) For the purposes of this Act or a relevant enactment, an inspector may—
(a) subject to subsection (3), enter (if necessary by the use of reasonable force) at all reasonable times any place of work or any premises—
(i) that he or she has reasonable grounds for believing has been or is being used in connection with the employment of persons, or
(ii) at which he or she has reasonable grounds for believing that records or documents relating to the employment of persons are kept,
(b) at such place of work or premises, inspect and take copies of, any books, records or other documents (including books, records or documents stored in non-legible form), or extracts therefrom, that he or she finds in the course of his or her inspection,
(c) remove any such books, documents or records from such place of work or premises and retain them for such period as he or she reasonably considers to be necessary for the purposes of his or her functions under this Act,
(d) require any person at the place of work or premises concerned, including the owner or person in charge of that place or premises, to give the inspector such information and assistance as the inspector may reasonably require for the purposes of his or her functions under this Act,
(e) require any person at the place of work or premises concerned, including the owner or person in charge of that place or premises, to produce to the inspector such books, documents or other records (and in the case of documents or records stored in non-legible form, a legible reproduction thereof) that are in that person’s possession or procurement, or under that person’s control, as he or she may reasonably require for the purposes of his or her functions under this Act,
(f) require any person, whom the inspector has reasonable grounds for believing to be, or to have been, an employer or employee, to answer such questions as the inspector may ask relative to any matter under this Act or a relevant enactment and to make a declaration of the truth of the answers to those questions, and
(g) examine with regard to any matter under this Act or a relevant enactment, any person whom the inspector has reasonable grounds for believing to be, or to have been, an employer or employee, following the inspector’s having cautioned the person that the person is not obliged to say anything unless he or she wishes to do so but that whatever he or she says will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence.
(2) When performing a function under this Act, an inspector may, subject to any warrant under subsection (4), be accompanied by such number of other inspectors or members of the Garda Síochána as he or she considers appropriate.
(3) An inspector shall not enter a dwelling, other than—
(a) with the consent of the occupier, or
(b) pursuant to a warrant under subsection (4).
(4) Upon the sworn information of an inspector, a judge of the District Court may, if satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for believing that information, books, documents or other records (including information, books, documents or records stored in non-legible form) required by an inspector under this section is or are held at any dwelling, issue a warrant authorising a named inspector, accompanied by such other inspectors or members of the Garda Síochána as may be necessary, at any time or times, before the expiration of one month from the date of issue of the warrant, to enter (if necessary by the use of reasonable force) the dwelling and perform the functions of an inspector under paragraphs (b), (c), (d), (e), (f) and (g) of subsection (1).
(5) A person shall be guilty of an offence if he or she—
(a) obstructs or interferes with an inspector or a member of the Garda Síochána in the course of exercising a power conferred on him or her by this Act or a warrant under subsection (4) or impedes the exercise by the inspector or member, as the case may be, of such power, or
(b) fails or refuses to comply with a requirement of an inspector or member of the Garda Síochána pursuant to paragraph (d) or (f) of subsection (1), or in purported compliance with such requirement gives information or makes a declaration to the inspector or member that he or she knows to be false or misleading in any material respect.
(6) Where an inspector believes, upon reasonable grounds, that a person has committed an offence under this Act, he or she may require that person to provide him or her with his or her name and the address at which he or she ordinarily resides.
(7) A statement or admission made by a person pursuant to a requirement under subsection (1)(d) or (f) shall not be admissible as evidence in proceedings brought against the person for an offence (other than an offence under subsection (5)).
(8) In this section—
“place of work” has the same meaning as it has in the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005;
“premises” includes vehicle, vessel, ship and railway carriage.
Modifications (not altering text):
Term “relevant enactment” construed (27.07.2016) by European Union (Posting of Workers) Regulations 2016 (S.I. No. 412 of 2016), reg. 10(2).
(2) A reference in section 27 of the Act of 2015 to a relevant enactment includes a reference to these Regulations.