Department of Justice

Tasmanian Industrial Commission
Contact  |  Accessibility  |  Disclaimer

Conciliation or arbitration

Usually a dispute is about an alleged unfair dismissal, alleged breach of an award or industrial agreement, or a dispute about a claim for long service leave payment or redundancy payment.

If you wish, and feel comfortable doing so, you, or somebody else on your behalf (such as a parent), can talk directly to the other party and try to settle the dispute before coming to the Commission.

If you choose not to have private discussions with the other party, or if such discussions have been unsuccessful, then you can lodge an application with the Commission.

In the Commission, you are able to be represented by an industrial advocate, an organisation (such as a union, if you are an employee, or an employer organisation if you are an employer), or another person of your choice. You may also be able to be represented by a lawyer, who will have to seek the leave of the Commissioner to appear on your behalf. Whether or not that leave will be granted will depend upon the circumstances of the case. The Commissioner who deals with your application will want to ensure that no party to the dispute is disadvantaged.

It is not necessary that you have someone to represent you. You can choose to represent yourself. You can also bring along a support person or persons if that is your wish. Please bring along three copies of all relevant documents (one for the Commissioner, one for you and one for the other party).

Depending upon the circumstances and the stage at which the matter is, it will be dealt with either by a conference (known as a "conciliation conference), or a hearing, or a combination of both.

A conciliation conference is a discussion, with the assistance of a Commissioner, the purpose of which is to try to resolve the dispute between the parties.

Almost always, there is a conference first, and it is only when a dispute is unable to be resolved through discussions, that it proceeds to a formal hearing.