Ryanair today (14 Sept) welcomed the decision of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in the “Mons” case which found in favour of Ryanair by rejecting the CTC Union argument that the home base (i.e where crew start and end their work day) should be the sole determinant of what court jurisdiction can hear disputes on labour issues.
The ECJ has ruled that all current factors such as where the worker gets their instructions, where goods/passengers are loaded/unloaded, where the work tools are stored, where the work is organised/performed and where the worker returns to at the end of their duty should continue to be considered in conjunction with the home base as part of an overall assessment in determining jurisdiction.
This ECJ decision does not change the status quo of Irish Contracts of Employment for Ryanair crew based across Europe. Ryanair will continue to employ its crew on Irish contracts of employment, and this decision only updates the criteria for assessing the jurisdiction of national courts to hear legal cases locally and does not alter the law applicable to the contract, which is determined by the Rome I regulation (593/2008).
All EU Member States’ national employment legislation is derived from EU directives to ensure protection for employees in relation to areas including annual leave, maternity leave and sickness benefits. Irish legislation has adopted all EU directives on employment rights which are also covered in Ryanair contracts of employment and in some cases, offers better protection than some EU countries; for example, maternity leave in Ireland is more favourable than in Belgium and the Irish minimum wage is also amongst the highest in Europe.
Ryanair’s Chief People Officer Eddie Wilson said:
“We welcome this “Mons” case ruling which upholds the existing EU rules on the jurisdiction of Member States national courts, and accepts Ryanair’s position that just one criteria (i.e. basing) cannot unilaterally determine jurisdiction. Maintaining broad assessment criteria ensures that the most appropriate jurisdiction should apply in cases involving international transport workers rather than a sole criterion approach, which would narrow the assessment and restrict movement and flexibility with a myriad of regulations and different crews throughout Europe.
We do not believe this “Mons” ruling will in any way alter our Irish contracts of employment or the union rights which all of our people enjoy under the protection of the Irish Constitution.”