Conciliation and Mediation

Conciliation and Mediation


The first stage of most workplace claims is a conciliation conference conducted by the relevant Commission. Conciliation can be a very daunting process if you are not experienced in the field.  Being forced to think on your feet and try to come to a negotiated settlement with a powerful employer can be difficult. We have powerful negotiation skills and in-depth knowledge of your rights to make sure you get the best outcome for your claim.

Conciliation and Mediation in Australian WorkplacesIn discrimination and sexual harassment complaints, a conciliation conference is generally an in-person meeting, giving parties the opportunity to discuss the issues negotiate a settlement to the claim. If the matter doesn’t settle at conciliation, the matter can be pursued at the relevant Court or Tribunal.


Conciliation and Mediation in Australian Workplaces

  • Unfair Dismissal Conciliation

The first stage in an Unfair Dismissal dispute is a conciliation conducted by the Fair Work Commission.  This conciliation is usually conducted via telephone and presided over by a professional conciliator from the Commission.

Most claims will settle at the conciliation stage.  This is the best opportunity to put forward the arguments as to why your dismissal was unfair and in breach of the Fair Work Act.  During this conciliation the applicant will have an opportunity to put forward their side, and the respondent will also have an opportunity to state why they believe the dismissal was fair.

Don’t feel like you have to do it alone. Australian Workplace Discrimination Representatives (AWDR) has experienced representatives who are able to fight for your rights and represent you in the conciliation.  We can take care of everything.

Our representatives use a combination of negotiation skills, legal knowledge, and experience in the area of industrial relations to put forward every effort to obtain a positive settlement on your behalf.

If you have an upcoming conciliation call our offices today! We can help!

TOLL FREE: 1800 333 666
EMERGENCY: 0421 634 370

Conciliation Statistics

In the period 1 July 2012 to 31 January 2013, the Commission conducted conciliation conferences for 6077 claims for unfair dismissal.  Of these, 81% were able to be settled at the conciliation stage.

Please note, these statistics refer to all claims lodged at FWC, not just those lodged by AWDR.

The following table summarises settlements achieved during conciliation conferences within this timeframe.

Conciliation Results Number of settlements Percentage of settlements
Settled 4941 81%
Settled: monetary 898 15%
Settled: non-monetary 1183 19%
Settled: monetary + non-monetary 2774 46%
Settled: reinstatement 56 1%
Settled: reinstatement + monetary 14 0%
Settled: reinstatement + non-monetary 11 0%
Settled: reinstatement, monetary + non-monetary 5 0%
Not Settled 1136 19%
Not settled at conciliation 1096 18%
Not settled: settlement collapsed 40 1%

Conciliation Outcomes

In addition to monetary compensation, many individuals also seek non-monetary items, such as references or statements of service.

From the settlements achieved, the following table summarises the amounts, as well as the non-monetary items which were agreed to as part of a settlement:

Conciliation Outcomes Number of settlements Percentage of settlements
Settlements involving money 3681 100
$0-$999 310 8%
$1,000-$1,999 617 17%
$2,000-$3,999 940 26%
$4,000-$5,999 662 18%
$6,000-$7,999 404 11%
$8,000-$9,999 237 6%
$10,000-$14,999 283 8%
$15,000-$19,999 97 3%
$20,000-$29,999 91 2%
$30,000-$39,999 21 1%
$40,000-maximum amount 12 0%
>maximum amount 7 0%
Settlement involving non-monetary items
Apology 63 N/A
Employment separation certificate 182 N/A
Payment in kind 33 N/A
Provision of information or undertaking 815 N/A
Reference 336 N/A
Resignation 1934 N/A
Return of property 85 N/A
Statement of service 2688 N/A
Withdrawal of allegation(s) 20 N/A
Withdrawal of application 634 N/A

The above data is from the Fair Work Commission, and can be accessed here: