CJEU - C 579/12 / Judgment Réexamen Commission v Strack

Key facts of the case:
  1. The purpose of these proceedings is to review the judgment of the General Court of the European Union (Appeal Chamber) of 8 November 2012 in Case T‑268/11 P Commission v Strack [2012] ECR II‑0000 (‘the judgment of 8 November 2012’), by which the General Court set aside the judgment of the European Union Civil Service Tribunal of 15 March 2011 in Case F‑120/07 Strack v Commission [2011] ECR-SC I-A-1-0000 and II-A-1-0000, which annulled the decision of the Commission of 15 March 2007 limiting to 12 the number of days of unused annual leave for 2004 which Mr Strack was allowed to carry over (‘the contested decision’). 
  2. The review concerns the questions whether – having regard to the case-law of the Court of Justice relating to the entitlement to paid annual leave as a principle of European Union social law, which is also expressly affirmed in Article 31(2) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (‘the Charter’) and is referred to in particular by Directive 2003/88/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 4 November 2003 concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time (OJ 2003 L 299, p. 9) – the judgment of the General Court of the European Union of 8 November 2012 adversely affects the unity or consistency of European Union law inasmuch as the General Court, as an appeal court: 
  • interpreted Article 1e(2) of the Staff Regulations of Officials of the European Union to the effect that it does not include the requirements relating to the organisation of working time contained in Directive 2003/88, in particular, paid annual leave, and 
  • consequently, interpreted Article 4 of Annex V to those Regulations as implying that the right to carry over annual leave exceeding the limit laid down in that provision may be granted only where the official has been unable to take leave for reasons connected with his activity as an official and the duties he has thus been required to perform. 
Results (sanctions) and key consequences of the case:
 
The Court (Fourth Chamber) hereby:
  1. Declares that the judgment of the General Court of the European Union (Appeal Chamber) of 8 November 2012 in Case T‑268/11 P Commission v Strack adversely affects the unity and consistency of European Union law inasmuch as the General Court, as an appeal court, disregarding the right to paid annual leave as a principle of the social law of the European Union also expressly affirmed by Article 31(2) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and, in particular, referred to by Directive 2003/88/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 4 November 2003 concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time, as interpreted by the case-law of the Court of Justice of the European Union:
  • interpreted Article 1e(2) of the Staff Regulations to the effect that it does not include the requirements relating to the organisation of working time contained in Directive 2003/88, in particular, paid annual leave, and
  • consequently, interpreted Article 4 of Annex V to those regulations as implying that the right to carry over annual leave exceeding the limit laid down in that provision may be granted only where the official has been unable to take leave for reasons connected with his activity as an official and the duties he has thus been required to perform.
  1. Sets aside that judgment of the General Court of the European Union. 
  2. Dismisses the appeal brought by the European Commission against the judgment of the European Union Civil Service Tribunal of 15 March 2011 in Case F‑120/07 Strack v Commission.
  3. Orders the European Commission to pay the costs which Mr Strack incurred both in the review proceedings and in the proceedings before the General Court of the European Union. 
  4. Declares that the Council of the European Union and the European Commission shall bear their own costs incurred in the review proceedings.
  5. Declares that the European Commission shall bear its own costs incurred in the proceedings before the General Court of the European Union.
Paragraphs referring to EU Charter: 

 

27-60