A worker must be able to carry over and accumulate unpaid holiday pay – CJEU hand down Judgment in the case of Mr C. King v The Sash Window Workshop Ltd

On 29 November 2017, the CJEU handed down their Judgment in the case of Mr C. King v The Sash Window Workshop Ltd & Richard Dollar (Case C‑214/16) following a request for a preliminary ruling from the Court of Appeal.

The CJEU has held that a worker must be able to carry over and accumulate unexercised rights to paid annual leave when an employer does not put that worker in a position in which he is able to exercise his right to paid annual leave.

Comment from Clare Gilroy-Scott, partner at Goodman Derrick LLP who represents Mr King on a Pro Bono basis:

 “This case is of importance in clarifying that workers who are denied their entitlement under the Working Time Regulations to paid annual leave do not have to take a period of unpaid leave first before taking legal action to receive pay for that leave. This would otherwise have left a worker (who was without protection from unfair dismissal and reliant upon continued work) with the unattractive prospect of having to suffer a detrimental impact on his remuneration by taking unpaid leave. The court has confirmed that a worker may carry over and make a claim for untaken leave entitlement on the termination of the engagement in these circumstances.”

Comment from James Williams, barrister at Henderson Chambers who represents Mr King on a Pro Bono basis:

 “This decision will be of great significance to many workers wrongly categorised by their employers as self-employed. In the short term they should now be able to bring, on termination of their engagement, a claim for all the holiday pay that they should have been paid during the working relationship. In the longer term, the decision should reduce the financial incentive for employers to deny that their staff are entitled to holiday pay – since if the employer gets this wrong, it must compensate the worker accordingly. This means that companies who deliberately categorise their staff as self-employed to deny them basic employment rights should no longer gain such a significant competitive advantage.”

Goodman Derrick LLP

Goodman Derrick is a leading commercial law firm in the City of London. We are recognised for providing high quality legal advice across a range of practice areas and for our distinctive, client-focused service.

  • 30 partners leading a team of over 90
  • A recognised adviser to FTSE-listed, national and international businesses, including many household names
  • Recommended as a leading law firm in key practices by the independent guides to the legal profession, Chambers & Partners and Legal 500
  • A founder member of Legal Netlink Alliance, please see the international section of our website for more information

For more information

Clare Gilroy-Scott, Partner, Goodman Derrick, mailto:cgilroy-scott@gdlaw.co.ukor on  +44 (0)20 7404 0606

James Caulfield, Head of Business Development, Goodman Derrick at jcaulfield@gdlaw.co.uk or on +44 (0)7815 846 124