Federación de Servicios Privados del sindicato Comisiones Obreras (CC.OO.) v Tyco Integrated Security SL & Anor Case C-266/14

Preliminary ruling in the ECJ concerning whether travel time for peripatetic workers to and from a first and last appointment should be considered working time.

The request for a ruling arose from Spanish proceedings involving security system maintenance companies. In 2011 they had closed all their regional offices and assigned employees to the central Madrid office. From that date the employers considered that the working day started from the time the employee got to the first appointment whereas previously the day had started when they arrived at the local depot to pick up a vehicle to travel to the appointment. In these proceedings the Spanish courts found that such time could not be considered rest time for health and safety purposes but neither was it time "during which the worker is, strictly speaking, at his employer's disposal so that he can be assigned work other than the travelling itself". They therefore adjourned proceedings and referred to the ECJ for a preliminary ruling on the effect of the Directive.

In this Opinion Advocate General Bot concludes that this time is working time. The Directive does not allow for any intermediate category between working time and rest time and he pointed out that "neither the intensity of the work carried out by the employee nor his output are among the elements that characterise 'working time' for the purposes of that directive".

Moreover the activities of the workers met the defnition required to be working time under three criteria: (i) spatial (to be at the workplace); (ii) authority (to be at the disposal of the employer); and (iii) professional (to be carrying out his activity or duties).

He therefore concludes at [65] that

"in circumstances such as those in the main proceedings, the time that peripatetic workers, that is to say workers who are not assigned to a fixed or habitual place of work, spend travelling from home to the first customer designated by their employer and from the last customer designated by their employer to their homes constitutes 'working time', within the meaning of that provision."

Read the official press release

Read the judgment in full on the ECJ website

Published: 10/09/2015 16:44

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