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Document 62005CJ0124

Summary of the Judgment

Judgment of the Court (First Chamber) of 6 April 2006.
Federatie Nederlandse Vakbeweging v Staat der Nederlanden.
Reference for a preliminary ruling: Gerechtshof te 's-Gravenhage - Netherlands.
Social policy - Protection of the safety and health of workers -Directive 93/104/EC - Right to paid annual leave - Financial compensation for not taking the minimum period of paid annual leave.
Case C-124/05.



Social policy – Protection of the health and safety of workers – Directive 93/104 concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time

(Council Directive 93/104, Art. 7)


Article 7 of Directive 93/104 concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time, as amended by Directive 2000/34, must be interpreted as precluding a national provision which, during a contract of employment, permits days of annual leave, within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the directive, which are not taken in the course of a given year, to be replaced by an allowance in lieu in the course of a subsequent year.

The entitlement of every worker to paid annual leave must be regarded as a particularly important principle of Community social law from which there can be no derogations and the implementation of which by the competent national authorities must be confined within the limits expressly laid down by the directive itself. That directive embodies the rule that a worker must normally be entitled to actual rest, with a view to ensuring effective protection of his safety and health, since it is only where the employment relationship is terminated that Article 7(2) permits an allowance to be paid in lieu of paid annual leave.

(see paras 28-29, 35, operative part)