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A labour dispute is a dispute (a dispute arises when two parties cannot agree) relating to the relationship of an employer and an employee.

The Labour Court (AD) is a special court whose function is to consider labour law disputes. Certain types of labour disputes can be brought directly at the Labour Court, others are dealt with by the district courts.

What disputes are dealt with by the Labour Court?

Two things are required for a labour dispute to be brought directly in the Labour Court:

  1. The action must be instituted by an employer or employee organisation or by an employer who has concluded a collective bargaining agreement directly.
  2. In addition, the case must refer to a dispute concerning a collective bargaining agreement or a dispute referred to in the Employment (Co-Determination in the Workplace) Act (for example disputes relating to right of association or disputes concerning right of negotiation) or disputes between parties who are bound by a collective bargaining agreement or disputes relating to a workplace where a collective bargaining agreement applies.

Labour disputes dealt with by district courts

Actions regarding other kinds of labour disputes should be instituted at a district court. For an individual employee who is not a member of or who is not supported by any trade union organisation, the action must be brought at a district court. The same also applies to an employer who is not supported by an employer organisation. If a party is dissatisfied with a determination by the district court in such a dispute, an appeal may be made to the Labour Court.

Read more under the menu 'Legal proceedings/Contentious cases'.


In both cases a judgment of the Labour Court represents a final determination of the dispute. Consequently, it is not possible to appeal against judgments of the Labour Court.

Time limits

In the case of labour disputes it is important to think about acting within the rather short time limits that apply in most cases to have the matter considered.

Read more on Arbetsdomstolens webbplats (the Labour Court's website, link opened in new window).

Senast ändrad: 2009-11-27