Under the Information and Consultation of Employees Regulations 2004 when is an employer required to initiate negotiations in respect of an information and consultation agreement?

A valid employee request will usually trigger a requirement for the employer to initiate negotiations in respect of an information and consultation agreement. However, if an employee request is made by fewer than 40% of employees and the employer already has a valid pre-existing agreement in place, instead of initiating negotiations it may hold a ballot to determine whether the workforce endorses the request. If the workforce endorses the request, or if the employer decides not to hold this ballot, the employer is required to initiate negotiations in respect of a new agreement. If the workforce does not endorse the request in the ballot then the pre-existing agreement will continue.

Employers may also initiate the process themselves without waiting for an employee request.