A recent case from European Courts has determined that an employer must keep records of working hours in order to fulfil its obligations under the Working Time Regulations.

The case, Federación de Servicios de Comisiones Obreras (CCOO) v Deutsche Bank SAE, brought a number of actions and sought a declaration that there was a duty to record actual daily working time of employees.

The court decided that if there was no requirement to keep records, it would be impossible to determine “objectively and reliably either the number of hours worked by the worker (or) when that work was done”.

Implications for UK

The UK Working Time Regulations do not confirm a requirement to record working time. This therefore puts into question whether the UK have properly transferred the Working Time Directive into national law. The Government will have to amend both Working Time Regulations (or derogate from the Directive where allowed) to avoid the risk of claims against them for failure to transpose the Directive.

Whether such action will be taken given the current situation with Brexit is unclear.  We will keep you posted should an obligation arise (through a change of national law) for private sector organisations to record working time for employees.

This is a clear example of one of the reasons why many wished to exit from the EU, as this is an example of where the UK would be bound by a judgment made by the European Court, about a case brought in Spain.

Paula Fisher.

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If you feel that you need guidance or advice on this matter, please call Practical HR on 01702 216573 or email Paula on the above.