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Preparing your case for arbitration? Ask yourself these eight important questions

by , 01 October 2014
Arbitration is a full re-hearing of the entire case, plus an investigation of the fairness of your procedures leading up to the dismissal (presentation of all the evidence, cross-examination of witnesses, etc).

When it comes to arbitration, preparation is your best weapon. It will help ensure you beat the odds and win at arbitration.

One of the things you must do when preparing your case for arbitration is to ask yourself the following eight crucial questions to examine the merits of your case...

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Ask yourself the following eight important questions when preparing your case for arbitration

The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service outlines the questions you must ask:
  1. Was a company rule or standard broken or not adhered to?
  1. Was the accused fully aware of the rule or standard in question?
  1. Was the rule or standard a reasonable one in the circumstances and, did the penalty fit the crime? Was dismissal an appropriate sanction in the circumstances?
  1. Does my disciplinary code contain the rule, or was it communicated in some other way to all employees?
  1. Did the act or omission by the accused cause any financial loss or damage to the company?
  1. Were my procedures consistent with any past similar acts of misconduct by other employees? (It would destroy your case if your opponent's witness testified he had committed a similar offence and was given a written warning and is still employed by you.)
  1. Have I carefully examined my disciplinary code and procedures to make sure it contains nothing my ex-employee can use as ammunition?
  1. Have I carefully re-examined the paginated bundle of documents I prepared for CCMA conciliation? (Remember, at arbitration you must give the Commissioner a bundle to refer to as the case proceeds. It must therefore be in perfect order and not hold any surprises.)
Here's the bottom line: Preparation is key when it comes to arbitration. So make sure you ask yourself these eight questions when preparing so you can examine the merits of your case and beat the odds.
Find out how to increase your chances of winning at the ccma.

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