Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2002] All ER (D) 199 (Jan)
Court: Court of Justice of the European Communities (Sixth Chamber)

Judges Macken (President), Gulmann, Puissochet (Rapporteur), Schintgen, and Cunha Rodrigues

Judgment Dates: 24 January 2002


European community - Continuity of employment - Transfer of trade, business or undertaking - Safeguarding of employees' rights in the event of transfers of undertakings - Applicability of directive - Analysis of subject of transfer and its contractual nature - Council Directive (EEC) 77/187.

The Case

(1)Article 1(1) of Council Directive (EEC) 77-187 of 14 February 1977 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the safeguarding of the employees' rights in the event of transfers of undertakings, businesses or parts of businesses had to be interpreted as applying to a situation in which a contractor which had entrusted the contract for cleaning its premises to a first undertaking, which had that contract performed by a subcontractor, terminated that contract, and entered into a new contract for the performance of the same work with a second undertaking, where the transaction did not involve any transfer of tangible or intangible assets between the first undertaking or the subcontractor and the second undertaking, but the had taken on, under a collective labour agreement, part of the staff of the subcontractor, provided that the staff thus taken on were an essential part, in terms of their number and their skills, of the staff assigned by the subcontractor to the performance of the subcontract; and (2)Article 3(1) of Council Directive (EEC) 77-187 had to be interpreted as meaning that it did not preclude the contract or employment relationship of a worker employed by the transferor on the date of the transfer of the undertaking within the meaning of art1(1) of that directive from continuing with the transferor where that worker objected to the transfer of his employment contract or employment relationship to the transferee.

Practice Areas

If you are a LexisLibrary subscriber you can read more about this case here.