Annual Leave and Sickness

Must a worker who falls ill during a period of statutory annual leave be entitled to take that leave at a later date?

Yes said the European Court of Justice in Asociación Nacional de Grandes Empresas de Distribución (ANGED) v Federación de Asociaciones Sindicales (FASGA) and others C-78/11.

The ECJ has held that a worker who becomes unfit for work during a period of statutory annual leave must, under Article 7(1) of the EC Working Time Directive, be entitled to reschedule the period of planned leave that coincides with the period of unfitness for work.

It was already clear from a previous ECJ case (Pereda v Madrid Movilidad SA) that a worker who becomes unfit for work before a period of statutory annual leave which extends into the annual leave must be able to take that leave at a later date. In the ECJ’s view in ANGED, it would be arbitrary and contrary to the purpose of the Directive to take a different approach to this where a worker falls ill after the leave has started.

Written by Edward Aston

28th June 2012

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