1. THE TERM OF THE “PREPARA” PLAN HAS BEEN EXTENDED
On 18 August 2016, a resolution issued by the Public Employment Services dated 29 July 2016 entered into force and with it they extended the term of the “Prepara” plan, which provides financial assistance as part of a vocational retraining programme for people who have exhausted their unemployment benefits.
2. SELECTION CRITERIA DO NOT NEED TO BE INCLUDED IN INDIVIDUAL DISMISSAL LETTERS SENT AS PART OF A COLLECTIVE REDUNDANCY
The Supreme Court reiterated the doctrine put forward in its recent rulings of 21 June and 15 March 2016, which determined that there is no obligation to include the selection criteria established during the negotiation of a collective redundancy in dismissal letters.
3. A CHALLENGE TO THE ELECTION OF A NEW WORKS COUNCIL DOES NOT EXTEND THE MANDATE OF THE PREVIOUS WORKS COUNCIL
The Supreme Court held that the mere challenge to the electoral process did not entail the automatic extension of the mandate of the previous works council, which was lost when the new works council was elected.
4. NATURE OF THE THREE-DAY PERIOD GRANTED TO A FIRED WORKER IN ORDER TO RETURN TO WORK
The Supreme Court held that the three-day period, granted to dismissed workers to return to work when employers decide to reinstate them was a procedural, and not a substantive, legal issue. This distinction determined the way in which the three-day timeframe would be calculated. By making the finding that the issue was of a procedural nature, the calculation of the three-day period could not include Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays.
5. THE FREEDOM OF TRADE UNIONS TO ORGANISE THEIR ACTIVITIES LIMITS COMPANIES’ ACTIONS
The National Court declared that it is for trade unions alone to choose whether to establish a branch at the company level or in each workplace. Where they opt for the first alternative, the company cannot constrain the union activities (e.g. by not giving the union representatives access to all the workers to inform them of the trade union’s activities).
6. WORKS COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES ENJOY A PREFERENTIAL RIGHT TO KEEP THEIR JOBS IN A COMPANY WHEN THEY ARE SUITABLE FOR EXISTING POSITIONS
The High Court of Justice of Castilla y León held that a company violated the preferential right of Works Council members to keep their jobs held by a member of the works council. The court found that before the company dismissed the employee it failed to justify his lack of suitability for another position. Furthermore, the company assigned another worker, who was not a works council representative and therefore did not have a preferential right to remain in the company, to a role that was different to his normal role.
7. LABOUR CONDITIONS ESTABLISHED IN EXPIRED COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS DO NOT APPLY TO EMPLOYEES WHO ARE CONTRACTED AFTER THE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT EXPIRES
The High Court of Justice of the Basque Country considered that once the extended term of a collective bargaining agreement had expired, as there was no applicable collective bargaining agreement with a wider scope, the conditions applied to newly contracted employees should have been based on the Statute of Workers and other applicable law (and not the provisions of the expired collective bargaining agreement).
8. PERMANENT SEASONAL WORKERS’ RIGHT TO BE PAID THEIR WEEKLY BREAK WHEN THEY FINISH THEIR EMPLOYMENT
The High Court of Justice of Madrid determined that permanent seasonal workers who ended their contract on a Friday and had worked five days during that week were entitled to receive their corresponding salary for the weekend, as they generated the two days of rest by working during the week.