Testing the Limits of Access to Justice and European Judicial Cooperation

Vigjilenca Abazi & Christina Eckes* *Assistant professor of European law, Maastricht University and professor of European law, University of Amsterdam, respectively. More than a ‘Procedural’ Revision The European Union for the past few years has faced significant crises of political and economic nature. It has to deal for the first time in its 60-year history with a Member State wanting to exit from the Union; with hostility by and even trade wars with what used to be a solid transatlantic ally; and growing populist movements across Europe undermining the fundamentals…

does a recent CJEU ruling show an irrational fear of mutation?

A recent CJEU judgment has made it more complicated to develop plants which have been cross-bred by mutagenic breeding. Two contributions to the blog (from Kathleen Garnett and Felix Beck) examine the judgment from different angles.   Confédération Paysanne & Others, Case C-528/16: GMO cabbage or plain old cabbage? Kathleen Garnett, Consultant and writer on EU government and law In September 2016 Stefan Jansson, professor in Plant Cell and Molecular Biology at Umeå University in Sweden sat down to a meal of cabbage and pasta, which he shared with a…

Handling sexual misconduct complaints: lessons to learn from the Russell McVeagh report | Employment Law Blog

Many employers, across industries, are facing an increase in sexual misconduct and harassment allegations from complainants emboldened by the #metoo movement.  Historic complaints are also being revisited as organisations ‘face up’ to situations that could perhaps, with hindsight, have been handled better.  Against that backdrop, a leading New Zealand law firm Russell McVeagh has published the findings of a wide-ranging, independent review (see here) into claims that five summer interns were sexually harassed by a partner and a solicitor at the firm in the summer of 2015-2016 which became the…

What constitutes “normal” remuneration for the purposes of calculating holiday pay, and should pay in respect of voluntary overtime be included? | Employment Law Blog

This question can pose real problems for employers, particularly where individuals are performing different types of work. However, the EAT has recently passed down a helpful judgement, which provides some guidance. In the case of Flowers v East England Ambulance Trust, the EAT held that if voluntary overtime is paid over a sufficient period, such that it can be regarded as “normal” remuneration, it should be taken into account when calculating an individual’s holiday pay. Background The Claimants were ambulance crew staff. They were required to work non-guaranteed overtime. This…

Note on the Polish Supreme Court preliminary ruling request of 2 August 2018

Alicja Sikora, Legal Service, Council of the European Union As Eugene Ionesco put it, you can only predict things after they have happened (Rhinoceros, 1959). On Thursday the Polish Supreme Court submitted to the European Court of Justice a preliminary ruling request under Article 267 TFEU. While doing so it also suspended the application of a Polish law forcing the early retirement of Supreme Court justices who are above 65 years old, including the President of the Supreme Court whose mandate is guaranteed by the Polish Constitution. This is a…

including by securing adequate medical professional qualifications rules

Professor Tamara Hervey, University of Sheffield* A Leave.EU tweet on 3 August 2018 claims that “EU regulations currently prevent doctors from qualifying before five years of training. Just one of countless examples of EU “market building” that do nothing of the sort, instead causing disruption and impairing UK policymakers.” It’s citing Health Minister Steve Barclay, and a ‘Westmonster’ blog. This is yet another example of pro-Brexit propaganda that sounds beguilingly simple and obvious but turns out to be nothing of the sort. It is so for four main reasons: First:…

Employers should take care when considering the dismissal of employees with long-term medical conditions | Employment Law Blog

The case of Ali v Torrosian and others (t/a Bedford Hill Family Practice) serves as a reminder to employers that the dismissal of employees with long-term medical conditions amounting to disability should be the last resort and less discriminatory alternatives should be considered first. Background Dr Ali was employed by the four partners of Bedford Hill Family Practice (the Practice). He was signed off work on long-term sickness absence having suffered a heart attack. Medical advice from the employee’s GP and treating cardiologist indicated that it was unlikely that he…

Dismissal of doctor with a long-term medical condition amounted to disability discrimination | Employment Law Blog

The case of Ali v Torrosian and others (t/a Bedford Hill Family Practice) serves as a reminder to employers that the dismissal of employees with long-term medical conditions amounting to disability should be the last resort and less discriminatory alternatives should be considered first. Background Dr Ali was employed by the four partners of Bedford Hill Family Practice (the Practice). He was signed off work on long-term sickness absence having suffered a heart attack. Medical advice from the employee’s GP and treating cardiologist indicated that it was unlikely that he…

What effect does a successful appeal against dismissal have on an employment contract? | Employment Law Blog

Mr Patel was an assistant working for Folkestone Nursing Home. His contract of employment incorporated an employee handbook which contained a contractual right to lodge an appeal in the case of any disciplinary action taken against him.  Patel was charged with two disciplinary offences which were said to amount to gross misconduct.  Firstly, that he fell asleep while on duty and, secondly, that he had falsified records of certain residents by pre-recording that they had slept through the night.  A disciplinary hearing was held and the charges were found to…

Facing a sexual misconduct allegation at work: the importance of your first account | Employment Law Blog

Facing any accusation of misconduct at work is difficult, but allegations of sexual misconduct are particularly distressing.  Such complaints not only have an impact on your professional life, but by their very nature can affect your personal and family life too.   It is not uncommon for a suspect to be told about any allegations for the first time at an impromptu meeting, or “chat”, with a manager or member of HR.  This leaves little, or often no, time to prepare.  But any account given is crucial and can have wide…