ACAS Early Conciliation: New Rules and Important Considerations

Please see above and below.

Circular No: Legal/02/20

1st December 2020


Dear Colleagues


The Legal Department would like to bring your attention to the following important development and considerations in respect of ACAS Early Conciliation:

Please be aware that new rules on ACAS Early Conciliation come into force today (1st December 2020). These rules mean that there is now a standard six week ACAS early conciliation process (rather than the previous one month process, with a possible extension of a further two weeks).

There is a trend of some members only engaging with ACAS Early Conciliation for short periods, with some even opting to receive their certificates on the same day that they apply. This is rarely in the member’s interests and we ask that unless expressly instructed otherwise, member’s applications are allowed to run for the full six week period where at all possible.

Members are reminded that only Regional Organisers or individuals expressly authorised by the General Secretary are able to handle ACAS negotiations on behalf of the Union.

If a member is provided with their ACAS Early Conciliation Certificate directly then they should provide this immediately, on receipt and without delay to their Regional Office and, if an L2 has been submitted, to the RMT Legal Department (

Similarly if the Regional Office is provided with an ACAS Early Conciliation Certificate either by the member or by ACAS direct, and an L2 has been submitted, then they should provide the Certificate immediately, on receipt and without delay to the RMT Legal Department (

All members should note that time is of the essence in Employment Tribunal claims and limitation periods are strict. Members should not unduly delay in providing L2 forms, accompanying documentation or ACAS Early Conciliation Certificates to the RMT Legal Department as a delay could result in their claim becoming time barred.

Mick Cash

General Secretary