Dates and times:
The Bristol Centre for Law at Work is hosting Professor Guy Davidov (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) and Dr. Maayan Niezna (Kent Law School) for a talk on ‘Consent in Contracts of Employment’ on Friday, 1 July at 4 pm. The talk will be in a hybrid format, and for those joining in person, drinks and nibbles will be available! If you’d like to join online or in person, please sign up using the Eventbrite page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/clw-event-consent-in-contracts-of-employmen...
Consent in contracts of employment is inherently questionable, and should be understood as a continuum that includes some level of coercion and some level of choice. Yet beyond the principle of non-waivability (which does not always apply), labour law does not deal with this difficulty in a systematic manner, and there are several contexts in which consent is legally valid or at least legally meaningful. We list some possible solutions (many of them found in existing laws of different legal systems), which can be divided into two groups: procedural rules designed to increase the chance of free and informed consent, and substantive standards that invalidate consent in some instances due to public policy considerations. We then move to discuss six different contexts in which consent by employees is currently legally valid or meaningful, at least in some countries. For each of these contexts we explain the current law and then suggest the appropriate solutions from the “menu” of procedural and substantive solutions previously discussed. The six contexts are: variation of contractual terms, waiver of access to courts, waiver of legislated rights (where allowed, specifically with regard to working time), waivers related to human rights (such as privacy), agreement to allow unilateral changes of terms by the employer, and assumption of substantive risks including by indirectly waiving employee/worker status.