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Term of the Week – The Working Time Directive

28 July 2016
Term of the Week – The Working Time Directive

The Working Time Regulations (WTR) 1998 implemented the Working Time Directive (93/104/EC) (EWTD). As an employer you must comply with the WTR 1998. Therefore, it is important you understand your obligations. To make this a little easier, we’ve made them into a handy checklist.

If you are an employer you must make sure that you:

–       Take all reasonable steps in keeping with the need to protect workers’ health and safety to ensure that each worker’s average working time (including overtime) does not exceed 48 hours per week.

–       Take all reasonable steps, in keeping with the need to protect health and safety, to ensure that night workers’ normal hours of work do not exceed 8 hours per day on average

–       Ensure that no night worker doing work involving special hazards or heavy physical or mental strain works for more than eight hours in any day

–       Ensure that all night workers have the opportunity of a free health assessment when starting night work and at regular intervals thereafter.

–       Transfer a night worker to day work where possible, if a doctor advises that the night work is causing health problems

–       Give workers adequate” rest breaks where the pattern of work is such as to put their health and safety at risk, in particular where work is monotonous.

–       Keep and maintain records showing whether the limits on average working time, night work and provision of health and safety assessments are being complied with in the case of each worker.

–       Allow workers the following rest periods unless they are exempt, in which case compensatory rest will usually have to be given:

o   11 hours’ uninterrupted rest per day;

o   24 hours’ uninterrupted rest per week (or 48 hours’ uninterrupted rest per fortnight; and

o   A rest break of 20 minutes when working more than 6 hours per day.

–       Allow workers 5.6 weeks’ paid holiday each year.


If you have any questions about the Working Time Directive – or any other area of Employment Law – please do not hesitate to contact us by email at contact@davenportsolicitors.com or telephone on 020 7903 6888.

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