May a party be represented by a labour consultant at the CCMA?
Rule 25 of the CCMA determines by whom a party may be presented at CCMA conciliation and arbitration proceedings.
At conciliation proceedings, the employer party may be represented by an employee or director if the employer is a company; a closed corporation may be represented by one of its members. In addition, a registered employers’ organisation may represent the employer if it is a member of the organisation. The employee party may be represented either by himself or by his registered trade union.
At arbitration proceedings, the respective parties may be represented by the above representatives or, dependent on the nature of the dispute, by a legal practitioner. A legal practitioner is a practising attorney or an advocate instructed by a practising attorney. However, none of the parties may be represented by a labour consultant, and the CCMA does not have the authority to allow representation by a labour consultant.
It is therefore imperative at the start of any process that serves before the CCMA to ascertain whether the representative has the necessary standing (locus standi) to represent a particular party. If the representative’s standing is questioned, the Commissioner should determine the issue of representation and request the representative to tender supporting documents. Such documents may include payslips, contracts of employment, and registration documents.
Author: Lelanie du Plessis