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Individual Labour Disputes

Title XIII
Individual Labour Disputes

Article 119

An authority shall be established with the Ministry under the denomination of "Authority of settlement of individual labour disputes" which shall be in charge of the amicable settlement of any individual labour dispute submitted to it between the worker and the employer with the approval of both parties before resorting to the judiciary.

The Minister shall issue a decision on the regulation governing this Authority and the determination of the procedures, rules and methods of settlement of the dispute.

If the dispute is settled, the Authority shall draft a minutes to be signed by the parties to the dispute or their representatives and the competent civil-servant, and such minutes shall have the power of an executive bond.


Article 120

An office shall be created with the Ministry of Justice for the preparation of the labour action for deliberation, under the denomination of "the Office in charge of labour actions" presided over by a judge with the Higher Civil Court who shall be in charge of the supervision over the work of the Office, in addition to a sufficient number of members from the Lower Civil Court.

The Supreme Judicial Council shall issue a decision nominating the president and the members of the Office, and a number of civil servants shall be subordinated to this Office.

The Minister of Justice shall issue a decision on the regulation of the work of the Office and the determination of the procedures of preparation of labour actions and the methods of notification of the litigants.


Article 121

The labour action shall be instigated by virtue of a statement of claim submitted to Office in charge of labour actions in accordance with the procedures specified in the Code of Civil and Commercial Procedure.

The Office shall hand over to the plaintiff all what may be useful to the registration of his action and he shall be notified of the date of the hearing set for the examination of the action by the competent judge in charge of labour actions.


Article 122

The judge in charge of labour actions shall hand over to the litigants in the first hearing set for examination of the action a statement of the dates on which the litigants must appear before him.

This shall be evidenced in the minutes and shall be deemed a notification of the litigants of said dates.

If any hearing coincides with an official holidays or if the sequence of the hearings was interrupted for any reason, the litigants shall appear on the date of the following hearing specified in the statement of the dates, without the need for notifying them again.

The Judge in charge of labour actions may modify the dates specified in the first paragraph of this Article in the presence of the litigant parties, provided not to exceed the period set for the examination of the action in accordance with the provision of Article 123 of this Law.


Article 123

The period of examination of the action by the judge in charge of labour actions shall not exceed two months as of the date of submittal of the statement of claim.

The President of the Office in charge of labour actions, based on the request of the Judge in charge of labour actions, may extend this period up to a maximum period of two additional months.


Article 124

The plaintiff or his representative may submit in the first hearing set for the examination of the action by the judge in charge of labour actions, the evidence and supporting documents and he may also indicate the facts he wishes to prove by virtue of a testimony, as well as the names and addresses of the witnesses.

The defendant or his representative shall submit a response to the plaintiff’s claim coupled with the evidence and supporting documents and he may also indicate the facts he wishes to prove by virtue of a testimony, as well as the names and addresses of the witnesses and the plaintiff is entitled to give his comments on the defendant’s defense. All of this shall occur on the dates set by the judge in charge of labour actions.


Article 125

The provisions governing the dismissal of the action and the declaration of the action as null and void specified in the Code of Civil and Commercial Procedure shall apply to the labour actions examined by the judge in charge of labour actions.


Article 126

If any of the litigants fails to attend any hearing before the judge in charge of labour actions following the evidencing of his notification, said judge may examine the action in the presence of the appearing parties.

The judge in charge of labour actions may continue the examination of the action in the absence of any the parties who is notified of the statement of dates without the need to notify him again.

If it is evidenced that any of the parties is not notified of the first hearing set for the examination of the action or of the statement of dates, he must be formally notified thereof.


Article 127

The judge in charge of labour actions may not, other than on the dates set for examination of the action, hear any clarification by any of the litigants unless in the presence of the other litigant. Moreover, he may not accept any document or memorandum from them if the perusal by the other party of said document or memorandum is not evidenced.


Article 128

The governmental and non-governmental authorities must provide the judge in charge of labour actions with the registers, data, information and documents requested by him and necessary for the settlement of the action, on the dates set by him.


Article 129

The judge in charge of labour actions shall study the litigants’ defense and examine carefully their evidence. He may have recourse to the civil servants of the Office for assisting him in calculations related to the action. He may also interrogate the litigants, hear the witnesses, carry-out the inspections, order the litigants to submit memorandums, complementary documents and take other procedures necessary for the preparation of the action.


Article 130

The judge in charge of labour actions shall draft before the last hearing set for his examination of the action a report including the facts of action, the pleas and defenses of the parties, the evidences on which they relied and his opinion on the action.

The judge in charge of labour actions shall propose to the parties the settlement of the dispute by virtue of conciliation in accordance with the conclusion of his report. If they agree, the conciliation agreed upon between them shall be evidenced in the hearing’s minutes and said minutes shall have following its signature by the litigants or their representatives and the judge in charge of labour actions the power of the executive bond.

Moreover, the litigants may at any time during the examination of the action by the judge in charge of labour actions request him to evidence the conciliation agreed upon between them in the hearing’s minutes and said minutes shall have following its signature by the litigants or their representative and the judge in charge of labour actions the power of the executive bond.


Article 131

If the period of examination of the action by the judge in charge of labour actions specified in Article 123 of this Law expires without conciliation being reached, the judge in charge of labour actions shall refer the action as is to the Higher Civil Court coupled with the report specified in Article 130 of this Law. If the litigants are present in the hearing, they shall be deemed to have been notified the date of examination of the action by the Court, otherwise the absent party shall be notified of the date.


Article 132

Neither of the parties to the labour action may submit to the Higher Civil Court any new claims or plea or defense not submitted during the examination of the action by the judge in charge of labour actions unless said plea is related to the public order.

No new evidence may be submitted to this Court unless in the cases where it is evidenced that the non-submittal of the evidence to the judge in charge of labour actions was due to reasons falling beyond the control of the party invoking it, provided the new evidence, in appearance, is true, serious and productive in the action.


Article 133

The Higher Civil Court shall examine the labour action in an expeditious manner and it must render its judgment in the action within thirty days as of the date of the first hearing.


Article 134

The judgments issued by the Higher Civil Court in labour action are final judgments and they may be challenged by way of cassation in accordance with the procedures and on the date set in the Court of Cassation Law.


Article 135

The action instigated by the worker for compensation due to the termination of the labour contract shall not be heard if submitted following more than thirty days as of the date of termination of the contract.

The validity of this time-limit shall be interrupted by the submittal of the dispute, following the parties’ approval, to the Authority of Settlement of Individual Labour Disputes during the time limit specified in the previous paragraph. In this case the action must be instigated within three month as of the date of completion of the proceedings before this Authority.


Article 136

The labour action shall be subject to the statute of limitation by the expiry of one year as of the date of expiry of the labour contract.

This statute of limitation shall not apply to the actions related to the infringement of commercial or industrial secretes or the implementation of the provisions of the labour contract aiming at ensuring the observance of these secrets.

Last Update: Monday 17 August 2015