EurECCA welcomes the judgement of the Court of Justice of the European Union against Ryanair employment practices on cabin crew labour contracts. The CJEU clearly prohibits Ryanair from constantly imposing Irish law without taking into account the real home base. Until now, Ryanair insisted that Ireland was the place for work for cabin crew working on board of Irish registered aircraft.
EurECCA has no doubt that this judgement will have an impact on the entire low cost segment of air transport as Ryanair will no longer be able to impose Irish labor law on aircrew working elsewhere in Europe and thus evade local labour laws and taxes.
« In disputes relating to their employment contracts, air crew members have the option of bringing proceedings before the courts of the place where they perform the essential part of their duties vis-à-vis their employer »
Until now Ryanair argued that Irish labor law should apply to any cabin crew contract not taking into account « the place where the employee habitually carries out his work »
With this judgement, the Court points out « that, as regards disputes related to employment contracts, the European rules concerning jurisdiction are aimed at protecting the weaker party. Those rules enable inter alia an employee to sue his employer before the courts which he regards as closest to his interests, by giving him the option of bringing proceedings before the courts of the Member State in which the employer is domiciled or the courts of the place in which the employee habitually carries out his work. »
This ruling is clearly a significant victory for European cabin crew as the « Home Base » becomes a significant indicator to determine, in circumstances such as those at issue, the place from which the employee habitually carries out his work.
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