As regards the decision-making process in the Federal Conciliation Body, no trend can be observed. Some renewal orders are issued unanimously and others by majority. While unions usually initiate the renewal process, there have been cases of renewal requests from employers. This suggests that the renewal mechanism is accepted by both trade unions and employers` organisations. This may be because the law is rather vague in some areas. This gives the social partners the opportunity to implement the renewal mechanism in such a way as to ensure the highest level of legitimacy. All parties concerned have the right to submit their written observations and to attend a hearing before the Federal Conciliation Commission renders its decision. However, if the above four conditions are met, the Federal Conciliation Commission is obliged to extend the collective agreement in question. Conversely, the Executive Board does not have the right to extend a collective agreement on its part (i.e. without the request of a contracting party) or to modify or modify the clauses of the collective agreement to be extended. In particular, neither a joint request by both parties for an extension of the collective agreement nor unanimous decision-making in the committee (see below) is required, so neither party is formally empowered to veto the renewal procedure. Austrian labour law provides for the extension of collective agreements to employers and employees who are not members of the signatory parties to collective bargaining. In practice, however, the provisions on renewal are less important than the system of compulsory membership of employers` associations when it comes to making Austrian collective agreements generally binding.
Since renewal mechanisms and compulsory membership of employers` associations have a positive effect on both collective bargaining coverage and the density of members of employers` associations, they can be considered functional equivalents from a comparative point of view. Below, we look at both the mechanisms for legal renewal and the impact of mandatory membership. Procedure in which the Minister of Social Affairs and Employment has the power to declare the provisions of an inter-trade agreement generally applicable to the whole sector. This procedure shall be requested and granted without exception. This means that the agreement in question then binds all employers in that particular sector, whether or not they belong to an employers` association. The procedure aims to promote collective bargaining. It protects the agreement in question against detention, in particular by unorganized employers (who are not bound by the inter-trade agreement itself), thus reducing wage competition in the labour market. Such an extension of the provisions of a professional inter-professional agreement is subject to a number of conditions. the bargaining board must provide for an effective exemption procedure to allow non-contracting parties to request derogations from the provisions of the collective agreement and these exceptions must be dealt with promptly (within 60 days); and must allow an independent panel to hear and adjudicate complaints if such an exemption is denied (within 30 days); There is no comparable automatic renewal mechanism for employers who are not covered by an agreement because they are also not affiliated to the signatory employers` association; or there is no collective agreement at all, since there is no employers` association capable of entering into such a contract.
In such cases, the Constitutional Labour Law provides for a special regulatory procedure called a “declaration of association”, during which a collective agreement (or part thereof) may be extended to employment relationships of essentially the same nature that are not covered by a contract. .