FOLLOWING A RECENT DECISION OF THE EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE, THE GOVERNMENT PROVIDES GUIDANCE ON WHAT CONSTITUTES WORKING TIME.
Under the Working Time Regulations 1998 working time is defined as any period during which a worker is working, at his or her employer's disposal and carrying out his or her activities or duties, or receiving relevant training. The Government provides guidance on what this includes.
What Counts as Work
What Does Not Count as Work
|Time spent travelling for workers who have to travel as part of their job, eg travelling sales representatives or 24-hour plumbers||Normal travel to and from work ie commuting|
|Where a worker has no usual place of work, time spent travelling from and to home for the first and last customer visits of the day||Travelling outside normal working hours|
|Working lunches, eg business lunches||Breaks when no work is done, eg lunch breaks|
|Time spent on call at the workplace||Time on call away from the workplace|
|Paid and some unpaid overtime||Unpaid overtime for which a worker has volunteered, eg staying late to finish something off**|
|Any other time that is treated as "working time" under a contract||Paid or unpaid holiday|
|Job-related training||Evening and day-release classes not related to work|
|Time spent working abroad, in some cases|
Maximum weekly working hours (UK Government website).
Federación de Servicios Privados del sindicato Comisiones Obreras v Tyco Integrated Security SL, Tyco Integrated Fire & Security Corporation Servicios SA Case C 266/14 ECJ.
**While the Government guidance explains that this type of voluntary overtime is not included in working time, it is likely that, where an employee volunteers for overtime at the employer's request, this would count as working time.