Flick Gocke Schaumburg secures another victory for Ryanair: short-time allowances for employees

Flick Gocke Schaumburg has achieved another victory for Ryanair’s subsidiary Malta Air Limited, which operates Ryanair bases in Germany, and its cockpit and cabin staff before the Regional Social Court of North Rhine-Westphalia. The competent employment agency had again refused the Maltese airline a notice of recognition for short-time work allowances for its employees. In interim relief proceedings, the Regional Social Court of North Rhine-Westphalia has now ruled in the claimant’s favor.

After the Covid-19 pandemic severely affected all air traffic, Malta Air Limited had to apply for short-time allowances for its approximately 850 employees. However, the employment agency refused to issue a positive notice of recognition on the grounds that the central management was based in Malta, meaning that the airline had neither business operations nor an operating department in Germany.

Malta Air Limited then mounted a successful appeal. The Regional Social Court of North Rhine-Westphalia has now ruled that the employment agency must issue a notice of recognition to Malta Air Limited pursuant to Sec. 99(3) of Germany’s Social Code Book III. The court disagreed with the employment agency, taking the view that the airline’s home bases must be assumed to have the required operating structures. It was not, according to the court, in line with European law to interpret the term “operations” to mean that the management of flight operations and the personnel management must be located in Germany, at least according to the review process required in interim relief.

Advisors to Malta Air Limited: Flick Gocke Schaumburg (Bonn)
Partner Dr. Tobias Nießen, Associate Eugen Dermanowski (both labor and employment law)

Malta Air Limited is a subsidiary of the Irish-based Ryanair Group. It operates seven home bases from Germany at various airports and employs around 850 pilots and cabin crew.