BIS has issued a consultation document, seeking views on new legislation restricting adjournments in employment tribunals.
The proposals are:-
1. if a party has already been granted two adjournments (for whatever type of hearing, preliminary or final), it will not be allowed a third adjournment.
2. if a request for an adjournment is made less than seven days before the hearing, it will not be granted.
3. BUT (1) and (2) will not apply if (a) exceptional circumstances apply; (b) both parties agree the adjournment and the tribunal believes it is desirable to facilitate a settlement; or (c) the adjournment is requested for a reason beyond the party's control (eg an administrative error by the tribunal, or late disclosure of documents by the other side). In such a situation, the postponement may be granted but a new rule will require the tribunal to consider whether a costs order should be made.
The consultation closes on 12th March 2015.