Does the heir of a worker who dies while in an employment relationship with a public or private employer have a right to financial compensation in lieu of the worker’s untaken paid annual leave?
Yes, held the CJEU in Wuppertal v Bauer and Willmeroth Broßonn.
It held that the Working Time Directive and the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms grants that heir the right to financial compensation.
It also held that the relevant EU laws had vertical direct effect, so that incompatible national laws would be disapplied in a dispute between a public employer and an individual.
However, Article 7 of the Working Time Directive did not have horizontal direct effect so as to disapply incompatible national law in a dispute between an individual and a private employer. That can be contrasted with Article 31(2) of the Charter, which did have horizontal direct effect so as to disapply incompatible national law in a dispute between an individual and a private employer. The Article reflected the essential principle of EU social law of the right to paid annual leave.
Thanks to Georgina Churchhouse, Pupil at 12 KBW, for preparing this case summary.