Should Employees Be Paid From When They Leave Home

Date Added 17.02.16

What are the changes?

In the recent European Court of Justice judgement in Federacion de Servicios Privados del sindicato Comisiones obreras v Tyco Integrated Security it was held that workers who do not have a fixed place of work, such as sales representatives, who spend time travelling between their home and the premises of the customers of their employers, are working under ‘working time’ within the meaning of the Working Time Directive.

What does the judgement mean to you?

The judgement clarifies the position as to what is working time for workers who do not have a fixed place of work.

The Court held that for workers, such as sale representatives, who do not have a fixed place of work, travelling is such a fundamental element to their job role that their place of work cannot be reduced to the physical area of their work or the employer customer’s premises. Therefore, if a worker who does not have a fixed place of work is carrying out duties during his journey to work, the worker will be regarded as working during that journey.

The decision must not be confused with rest time. The Working Time Directive only recognised two categories of time; working time and rest time. Any time that is spent not working is rest. Therefore, if a worker has a fixed place of work, the time spent travelling to and from that fixed place is rest time. Where this is not the case, is where the time is categorised as working time for a worker to complete their working duties.

As a result of this judgement, employers may wish to implement certain monitoring procedures to ensure that this system is not abused by workers who may claim that they have been travelling to client premises when they have not. They should also take care to ensure that the rest break and maximum working weekly time regulations are not breached.

Need some advice?

Talk to Tollers! We are here for you.

A member of our Employment Law Team will be able to assist you with any issues you may have regarding any of the above changes. Should you have any queries, do not hesitate to contact us on 01604-258558.

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