International Employment Law Review - France: September 2014

September 11, 2014

A Court of Appeals Decision Provides Helpful Guidance Regarding an Employer’s Obligations When Consulting with Employee Representative Bodies
Before agreeing and executing a business sale involving a transfer of a business, an international publishing company (Wolters Kluwer) consulted its works council. The works council refused to deliver its opinion and issued court proceedings seeking to require the employer to restart the consultation process, even though in the meantime the sale had been implemented.

What Should an Employer Do Where an Employee Seeks a Declaration of Constructive Dismissal without Resigning?
Under French law, there are various ways in which an employment contract may be terminated: resignation, dismissal, redundancy, amicable termination and so on. There is also a category of termination which is similar to a claim for constructive dismissal but where the employee does not resign and remains employed by the Company.

Courts Limit Claims for Constructive Dismissal
Constructive dismissal is, in effect, a resignation treated as a dismissal. The employee terminates the employment contract in response to an employer’s alleged breach and the Employment Tribunal then assesses the employer’s breach to decide whether it is sufficiently serious to amount to a dismissal or whether it should be treated as a resignation.

New Obligation on the Employer Seeking External Redeployment in the Case of Redundancies (or Economic Dismissals)
Before making an employee redundant, the employer must meet several obligations.

Taking into Account Absences Due to a Strike While Calculating Bonuses Does Not Necessarily Infringe the Right and the Freedom to Strike
Under the French Labor Code, the exercise of the right to strike shall not lead to retaliation by the employer in terms of employee compensation or benefits.

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