Newsflash! CCMA Rule Changes

CCMA Rule Changes

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The Governing Body of the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration have published updated Rules which now make provision for, among others: compliance with legislation regarding personal information; the manner in which to request to have a matter re-enrolled; and the payment of an arbitration fee ordered in terms of section 140 of the Labour Relations Act No. 66 of 1995, where the commissioner has found that the dismissal was procedurally unfair.

The Rules also make provision for the definitions of “data subject”, “Employment Law”, “personal information”, and “processing”, among others. These Rules come into effect from 24 April 2023.


The relevant changes include the following:

  • Rule 1A has been added, which specifies how a document should be served to protect personal information under POPIA.
  • Rule 2 and 3 both have wording changes that affect the filing and day calculations
  • Rule 4 regarding who must sign a document has added so that if a person that is not authorized signs for a document, they can be called in to confirm their intention of serving the document to the correct party, and a signature now includes an electronic signature and referrals made through the online portal.
  • Rule 5 and 7 has made changes regarding how services may be ordered and how documents will be regarded as filed.
  • Rule 9 (1) regulates which time periods for an application for condonation should be considered and (2A) condonation may also be applied for using the commission electronic referral online portal.
  • Rule 10 makes provision for online electronic referrals and the commision has the discretion to determine how condonation will be dealt with.
  • Rule 13 redefines the consequences if a party fails to attend the scheduled concilliation and 13(1A) provides that in the event that a dispute relates to Rule 64 of the Act, picketing rules must be established before a certificate of non-resolution is issued unless a party provides a signed picketing rules agreement as required by Rule 69(6A) of the Act.
  • Rule 18 has been changed to include referrals through the online portal as well as the requirements of a request for arbitration not done through the online portal. The CCMA also has jurisdiction to decide if condonation will be determined at the hearing or by written submissions received from the parties.
  • Rule 23 looks at the requirements for the postponement of an arbitration hearing by means of an agreement, considering whether a postponement application may be made on papers, which resolves the situation where postponement is assumed if no response is received from the CCMA.
  • Rule 24 speaks to where conciliation and arbitration should take place and which CCMA official has the requisite power in this regard.
  • Rule 29 requests for disclosure should be made in line with Rule 31
  • Rule 30 commissioners have discretion to remove matters from the roll when a party fails to attend arbitration proceedings, specifically catering to re-enrolment of such matter by means of the applicable form.
  • Rule 31 also applies to rule 29, the rule applies to any application, and may be determined on papers. Introduction of a written statement is accepted as an alternative to an affidavit.
  • Rule 31C, a new rule, aligns the amended rule 30.
  • Rule 32 is relook of the circumstances when an arbitration award or ruling can be varied or rescinded in the light of a decision that may be taken by the CCMA or commissioner to remove a matter from te roll.
  • Rule 34 deals with enquiries in terms of sec188A and takes caselaw into account.
  • Rule 37 speaks to witness fees and subpoenas being delivered by email.
  • Rule 40A considers payment of arbitration fees ordered in terms of s140 of the LRA. Cheque payments are removed and such payments are only to take place electronically.
  • Rule 41 the definition of ‘data subject’ and ‘personal information’ are in line with POPIA


Please download the government gazette and notice below:


For more information about the CCMA rule changes in South Africa, please contact the LabourNet Helpdesk at 0861 LABNET (0861 522 638).

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