Clarkslegal LLP - Solicitors in Reading and London

Legal Updates

Advocate General's opinion in Woolworths case due 5 February 2015

14 January 2015 #Employment

At the start of last year we reported that the Court of Appeal had referred the Woolworths and Ethel Austin cases to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) . These cases were considered by the ECJ on 20 November last year.

The ECJ is assisted by Advocates General who have a duty to give opinions on cases in an open and impartial manner. The union involved in the case, USDAW, has now reported that the Advocate General's opinion is due to be announced on 5th February. 

This opinion will consider the issues referred to the ECJ which include whether the words 'at one establishment' in the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 should be disregarded for the purposes of collective redundancies.  The opinion is not binding on the ECJ but is very influential and usually followed by the full court.

It is likely that the ECJ's decision will still take some months to be handed down following the opinion being announced,  so we may not have the final decision until later in the year. 

We will keep you updated on the progress of this case.

Clarkslegal, specialist Employment lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
For further information about this or any other Employment matter please contact Clarkslegal's employment team by email at by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.
This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full General Notices on our website.

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Louise Keenan

Louise Keenan

T: 0118 960 4614
M: 0779 900 7325


Employment team
+44 (0)118 958 5321