Poland / Constitutional Court / P 46/11 District Court in Gliwice, Parliament and the Prosecutor General

Key facts of the case:

The Constitutional Court, sitting as a full court, considered the legal question of the District Court in Gliwice (VI Department of Labor and Social Security) on the resumption of employment as a result of restoration to work and the right to remuneration for the period of unemployment. The Constitutional Court held that the legal question at hand is that of the constitutionality of the scope of the employee's claims in the event termination without notice of the employment contract by the employer and of the exclusion – in such a case – of the applicability of general rules contained in the Civil Code relating to compensation for a damage caused by improper performance of obligations (Article 471 Civil Code). The Court shared the view– adopted in the doctrine and case law – that considering the current legal situation the provisions of the Labour Code exclude the possibility of recourse to the provisions of the Civil Code and, therefore, prevent the adjudication of compensation to an employee in excess of the remuneration for work the amount of which is set forth in Article 57 § 1 of the Labour Code.

Paragraphs referring to EU Charter: 


An important aspect of the national labor protection is protecting long-term employment which is an essential element of the right to work. The right to work, understood as the right to make a living through one’s own freely chosen work is one of the fundamental human rights inherent in the right to life and human dignity. It is expressed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 23 para. 1), International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Journal of Laws of 1977 No. 38, item. 169 - Art. 6 para. 1), The European Social Charter (Journal of Laws of 1999, No. 8 , pos. 67, as amended. - p. I, points 1 and Thu. II art. 4) and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (Article 15). The Charter of Fundamental Rights in Article 30 further adds that "[e]very worker has the right to protection against unjustified dismissal, in accordance with Union law and national laws and practices." It is clear that the protection of the right to work is, inter alia, based on the fact that a person who has already found a job could not be deprived of it without a good reason or in violation of the law.

Deciding body (original language): 
Trybunał Konstytucyjny