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Working Time Regulations 1998

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Title: Working Time Regulations 1998  
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Subject: Barber v RJB Mining (UK) Ltd, United Kingdom labour law, HM Revenue and Customs v Stringer, Commission v United Kingdom, Working time in the United Kingdom
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Working Time Regulations 1998

Working Time Regulations 1998
Long title ...
Chapter SI 1998/1833
Territorial extent England and Wales; Scotland; Northern Ireland
Royal Assent 1998
Status: Current legislation
Text of statute as originally enacted

The Working Time Regulations 1998 (SI 1998/1833) are a United Kingdom statutory instrument, which regulate the time that people in the UK may work. The regulations apply to all workers (not just employees) and stipulate minimum rest breaks, daily rest, weekly rest and the maximum average working week.[1] It is intended to implement the EU Working Time Directive 2003/88/EC.[2] Firstly, it sets a default rule which, although one may opt out of it, that workers may work no more than 48 hours per week. Secondly, it grants a mandatory right to paid annual leave of at least a minimum of 28 days (including bank holidays and public holidays). Thirdly, it creates the right to a minimum period of rest of 20 minutes in any shift lasting over 6 hours.

ECJ caselaw has confirmed that statutory holiday will continue to accrue during career breaks or sabbaticals.[3]

Case law

"It is impossible to establish universal uniformity of hours without inflicting very serious injury to workers."
  • Lyons v Mitie Security Ltd [2010] IRLR 288, EAT decides a worker who does not give notice to take holidays may lose their paid annual leave entitlement (questionable compatibility with the WTD 2003).

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ 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
  3. ^
  4. ^ Judgment of the Court of 12 November 1996. - United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland v Council of the European Union. - Council Directive 93/104/EC concerning certain aspects of the organization of working time - Action for annulment. - Case C-84/94.
  5. ^ Judgment of the Court of 3 October 2000. - Sindicato de Médicos de Asistencia Pública (Simap) v Conselleria de Sanidad y Consumo de la Generalidad Valenciana. - Reference for a preliminary ruling: Tribunal Superior de Justicia de la Comunidad Valenciana - Spain. - Social policy - Protection of the safety and health of workers - Directives 89/391/EEC and 93/104/EC - Scope - Doctors in primary health care teams - Average period of work - Inclusion of time on call - Night workers and shift workers. - Case C-303/98.
  6. ^ Judgment of the Court (Sixth Chamber) of 26 June 2001. - The Queen v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, ex parte Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematographic and Theatre Union (BECTU). - Reference for a preliminary ruling: High Court of Justice (England & Wales), Queen's Bench Division (Crown Office) - United Kingdom. - Social policy - Protection of the health and safety of workers - Directive 93/104/EC - Entitlement to paid annual leave - Condition imposed by national legislation - Completion of a qualifying period of employment with the same employer. - Case C-173/99.
  7. ^ Judgment of the Court of 9 September 2003. - Landeshauptstadt Kiel v Norbert Jaeger. - Reference for a preliminary ruling: Landesarbeitsgericht Schleswig-Holstein - Germany. - Social policy - Protection of the safety and health of workers - Directive 93/104/EC - Concepts of working time and rest period - On-call service (Bereitschaftsdienst) provided by doctors in hospitals. - Case C-151/02.


External links

  • guidance for workers
  • guidance for businesses
  • 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
  • Old EU Working Time Directive 93/104/EC
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