RSS Feed

Legal Updates

More Articles: Latest Popular Archives

Employer constraints means on call time is ‘working time’

Makbool Javaid

In Ville de Nivelles v Matzak, Matzak (M) is a firefighter, who is required to be on standby at certain times, which is unpaid, other than when carrying out firefighting duties. When on-call, the employer requires that M be contactable and report to the fire station within 8 minutes, meaning that his activities during standby are restricted. The ECJ held that M’s stand-by time is ‘working time’ under the Working Time Directive. The determining factor in such circumstances is the requirement that the worker be physically present at the place determined by the employer and be immediately available to work. Here, the employer’s requirements mean M’s ability to devote himself to his personal and social interests are limited, which is different to stand-by duty where a worker simply has to be contactable.

This update provides summary information and comment on the subject areas covered. Where employment tribunal and appellate court cases are reported, the information does not set out all of the facts, the legal arguments presented and the judgements made in every aspect of the case. Click on the links to access full details. If no link is provided, contact us for more information.  Employment law is subject to constant change either by statute or by interpretation by the courts. While every care has been taken in compiling this information, SM&B cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Specialist legal advice must be taken on any legal issues that may arise before embarking upon any formal course of action.