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Document 62006CA0268

Case C-268/06: Judgment of the Court (Grand Chamber) of 15 April 2008 (reference for a preliminary ruling from the Labour Court (Ireland)) — Impact v Minister for Agriculture and Food, Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Minister for Transport (Directive 1999/70/EC — Clauses 4 and 5 of the framework agreement on fixed-term work — Fixed-term employment in the public sector — Employment conditions — Pay and pensions — Renewal of fixed-term contracts for a period of up to eight years — Procedural autonomy — Direct effect)

OJ C 142, 7.6.2008, p. 4–5 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)

7.6.2008   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 142/4


Judgment of the Court (Grand Chamber) of 15 April 2008 (reference for a preliminary ruling from the Labour Court (Ireland)) — Impact v Minister for Agriculture and Food, Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Minister for Transport

(Case C-268/06) (1)

(Directive 1999/70/EC - Clauses 4 and 5 of the framework agreement on fixed-term work - Fixed-term employment in the public sector - Employment conditions - Pay and pensions - Renewal of fixed-term contracts for a period of up to eight years - Procedural autonomy - Direct effect)

(2008/C 142/05)

Language of the case: English

Referring court

Labour Court

Parties to the main proceedings

Applicant: Impact

Defendants: Minister for Agriculture and Food, Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Minister for Transport

Re:

Preliminary ruling — Labour Court — Interpretation of Clause 4(1) (principle of non-discrimination) and Clause 5(1) (measures to prevent abuse arising from the use of successive fixed-term employment contracts or relationships) of the annex to Council Directive 1999/70/EC of 28 June 1999 concerning the framework agreement on fixed-term work concluded by ETUC, UNICE and CEEP (OJ 1999 L 175, p. 43) — Action seeking to rely on the direct effect of those provisions — Lack of jurisdiction, under national law, of the court seised — Jurisdiction under Community law, in particular pursuant to the principles of equivalence and effectiveness

Operative part of the judgment

1.

Community law, in particular the principle of effectiveness, requires that a specialised court which is called upon, under the, albeit optional, jurisdiction conferred on it by the legislation transposing Council Directive 1999/70/EC of 28 June 1999 concerning the framework agreement on fixed-term work concluded by ETUC, UNICE and CEEP, to hear and determine a claim based on an infringement of that legislation, must also have jurisdiction to hear and determine an applicant's claims arising directly from the directive itself in respect of the period between the deadline for transposing the directive and the date on which the transposing legislation entered into force if it is established that the obligation on that applicant to bring, at the same time, a separate claim based directly on the directive before an ordinary court would involve procedural disadvantages liable to render excessively difficult the exercise of the rights conferred on him by Community law. It is for the national court to undertake the necessary checks in that regard.

2.

Clause 4(1) of the framework agreement on fixed-term work concluded on 18 March 1999, which is annexed to Directive 1999/70, is unconditional and sufficiently precise for individuals to be able to rely upon it before a national court; that is not the case, however, as regards Clause 5(1) of the framework agreement.

3.

Article 10 EC, the third paragraph of Article 249 EC, and Directive 1999/70 must be interpreted as meaning that an authority of a Member State acting in its capacity as a public employer may not adopt measures contrary to the objective pursued by that directive and the framework agreement on fixed-term work as regards prevention of the abusive use of fixed-term contracts, which consist in the renewal of such contracts for an unusually long term in the period between the deadline for transposing Directive 1999/70 and the date on which the transposing legislation entered into force.

4.

In so far as the applicable national law contains a rule that precludes the retrospective application of legislation unless there is a clear and unambiguous indication to the contrary, a national court hearing a claim based on an infringement of a provision of national legislation transposing Directive 1999/70 is required, under Community law, to give that provision retrospective effect to the date by which that directive should have been transposed only if that national legislation includes an indication of that nature capable of giving that provision retrospective effect.

5.

Clause 4 of the framework agreement on fixed-term work must be interpreted as meaning that employment conditions within the meaning of that clause encompass conditions relating to pay and to pensions which depend on the employment relationship, to the exclusion of conditions relating to pensions arising under a statutory social-security scheme.


(1)  OJ C 212, 2.9.2006.


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