EU Developments

Self-employed to get maternity and pension rights

Self-employed workers and their partners will gain better social protection, including the right to maternity leave for the first time, under a new EU directive.


Working time back on the agenda

The EU Commission has initiated a comprehensive review of the Working Time Directive (WTD), despite the fact that there was a complete failure to reach agreement when this was last considered in April 2009.

European Sick Leave Index

Employers can access a free index which provides them with information relating to the impact of employee illness on their organisation.


Maternity leave extension: don't panic

‘Shock, horror’ headlines greeted the recent EU proposal to extend maternity leave. However the reality is somewhat different - and there is a long way to go before this actually becomes law (if at all).


Hiring expected to go hand-in-hand with continuing employee cuts

Some 82% of European companies are planning to hire employees to new positions in 2010, according to a survey by Towers Watson, but most of these companies expect hiring to remain at best sluggish – with 45% saying it will be below levels typical of past years.


Age limit of 68 could be justified

A German law which set a maximum retirement age of 68 for dentists working in the German national health service was not discriminatory on the grounds of age. The age limit was objectively and reasonably justified as a proportionate means of achieving the legitimate aim of providing employment opportunities for younger dentists in situations where there was an excessive number of dentists or there was a real risk of this occurring.

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