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French Employment Tribunals: Can the Disparity of their Decisions be Explained?

Abstract : The uncertainty about the outcomes of proceedings before France’s employment tribunals (“les conseils de prud’hommes”, also known as “les prud’hommes”) is often pointed to as a possible damper on hiring of new staff. This uncertainty would appear to be generated in part by the fact that similar cases brought before them seem to be judged differently from one time to another or from one tribunal to another. After recalling the historic aim of the “institution prud’homale”, the way it works, and recent changes to it, this policy brief shows that the decisions rendered by the French employment tribunals do indeed vary strongly from one tribunal to another. However, the source of this variability remains in doubt: it might equally well reflect the arbitrary nature of “prud’homale” justice as the fact that the cases judged by the various tribunals are of different natures and of different seriousness. Finally, this policy brief uses the work of Desrieux and Espinosa to show that union membership of the judges elected by employees does not influence the decisions rendered by the French employment tribunals. These findings make it possible to dismiss a possible source of partiality in the justice rendered by the various tribunals.
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https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-02537510
Contributor : Caroline Bauer <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, April 8, 2020 - 9:48:33 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 14, 2020 - 3:57:57 AM

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  • HAL Id : halshs-02537510, version 1

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Thomas Breda, Esther Chevrot-Bianco, Claudine Desrieux, Romain Espinosa. French Employment Tribunals: Can the Disparity of their Decisions be Explained?. 2017. ⟨halshs-02537510⟩

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