On 19th October last, Pat Breen, the Minister for State at the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, signed into law the Sectoral Employment Order (SEO) for the Construction Industry. The SEO, which has immediate effect, is a statutory instrument that is legally binding on all employers of craft workers, general operatives and apprentices in the construction industry. It is also applicable to Labour Supply Agencies. The SEO provides for rates of pay, pensions and sick pay and dispute resolution procedure as set out in the attached.

While the Labour Court, in its recommendation to the Minister on the SEO, did not recommend the inclusion of travel allowances at this time, the SEO provides that travel allowances continued to be paid where a contractual arrangement currently exists.

Where an employer is unable to pay the set rates due to severe financial difficulties, the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act, 2015, allows the Labour Court to exempt an employer from the obligation to pay the remuneration set out in an SEO for a limited period.

A separate application to the Labour Court for an SEO in the Mechanical Sector was heard on 9th October last. An application to the Court for an SEO in the Electrical Sector was recently withdrawn by the TEEU.

Further SEOs are likely for other sectors, such as hospitality, in the near future so watch this space.

Please click here to see the SEO for the Construction Industry.