1. Remuneration FOR ANNUAL LEAVE to be based on full salary, not sick pay
The Court of Justice of the European Union has held that Article 7 of Directive 2003/88/EC concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time must be interpreted to mean that, when calculating the remuneration to be paid to an employee in respect of annual leave, the salary to be used is the full salary stipulated in the employment contract, even if the employee has been on sick leave and received a reduced salary during that period.
2. EMPLOYEES WHO RESIGN WITHOUT JUST CAUSE ARE ENTITLED TO A PAYMENT IN LIEU OF THE PAID ANNUAL LEAVE NOT TAKEN DURING THEIR LAST YEAR OF EMPLOYMENT
The Court of Justice of the European Union has held that Article 7 of Directive 2003/88/EC concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time, read in the light of Article 31(2) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, must be interpreted to mean that if an employee unilaterally terminates their employment relationship early and without just cause, they are entitled to a payment in lieu of the paid annual leave that they did not take during their last year of employment.
3. SUPREME COURT CONFIRMS WITHDRAWING MEAL VOUCHERS DURING THE STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS A SUBSTANTIAL MODIFICATION OF WORKING CONDITIONS
The Supreme Court has upheld the judgment of the National Court of 9 December 2020 which considered that an employer’s decision to withdraw meal vouchers during the state of emergency, when employees were working remotely, was a substantial modification of their working conditions.
4. Temporary employee given permanent employee status for having passed the selection process for a permanent position
The Supreme Court has held that an employee of a state-owned company who had 20 temporary contracts over a period of ten years was a permanent employee. Prior to the termination of her last contract to provide temporary cover, the employee had passed the selection process for permanent positions within the company but had not been contracted to fill one of them.
5. TRADE UNION INFRINGES THE RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION OF THE OTHER TRADE UNION BY OFFERING EUR 100 BONUS TO ITS MEMBERS
The Supreme Court has held that a trade union’s offer of a EUR 100 gift voucher to its members in exchange for them voting in trade union elections was a way of indirectly soliciting votes in favour of its candidates. The Labour Chamber found these actions infringed the right to freedom of association of the other trade union as it unlawfully interfered with the election result.
6. CHECKING EMPLOYEES’ PERSONAL BELONGINGS ON LEAVING THE WORKPLACE INFRINGES THEIR RIGHT TO PRIVACY IF THERE ARE INSUFFICIENT GROUNDS TO JUSTIFY THE MEASURE
The National Court has held that checking employees’ personal belongings on a daily basis when they leave the workplace, in an area with video surveillance and in front of a senior employee, infringes the principles of proportionality and minimum intervention if there is no previous conduct or other reason to suspect the employees that would make such a measure necessary.
7. PAYMENT OF SPECIAL COVID-19 BONUS SHOULD HAVE STOPPED WHEN THE STATE OF EMERGENCY ENDED
The National Court has partially upheld the right of employees involved in a collective dispute to receive a EUR 250 gross monthly bonus that they were not paid between 2 May and 21 June 2020. The bonus, known as the "COVID-19 extraordinary bonus", was paid by companies to employees for their dedication and commitment to ensure the continued supply of dairy products during the health crisis caused by COVID-19.
8. PASSING A SELECTION PROCESS IS NO LONGER REQUIRED FOR LABOUR-INTENSIVE PUBLIC SECTOR activities IF A SIGNIFICANT PART OF THE WORKFORCE HAS BEEN TAKEN ON BY THE INCOMING CONTRACTOR
The National Court has held that article 44 of the Workers’ Statute must be applied to labour-intensive public sector activities when a significant part of the workforce has been taken on by the incoming contractor through a public employment offer. The National Court also noted that the incoming contractor cannot require that former contractors’ employees pass the public employment offer process to be taken on.
9. EMPLOYEES WILL NOT RECEIVE PAID LEAVE TO ATTEND MEDICAL APPOINTMENTS OF THEIR FIRST-DEGREE RELATIVES IF THE FAMILY MEMBER IN NEED OF MEDICAL CARE IS NOT DEPENDENT ON THE EMPLOYEE
The National Court has concluded that the agreement reached in a company’s equality plan to give employees paid leave to accompany first-degree relatives to medical appointments stems from the employees’ need to achieve a balance between work and family life. According to the National Court, the need is evident when the person requiring medical assistance is a dependent family member. As such, if the family member is not a dependent of the employee, the employee is not entitled to paid leave to accompany them.