Reed Smith Newsletters

Welcome to our quarterly newsletter, with a summary of the latest news and developments in French employment law.

Authors: Séverine Martel

Case law updates

Maternity leave: The French highest court “Cour de Cassation” (or “Court of Cassation”) has issued an opinion regarding the employer’s obligation to propose a professional interview to discuss the employee’s professional development prospects upon her return from maternity leave. In this case, the employee was dismissed for poor performance a few months after her return to work from maternity leave. No professional interview had been offered to her. She requested that her dismissal be nullified. The Court of Cassation rejected her position, since the Labor Code does not expressly provide that failure to offer a professional interview leads to the nullification of the subsequent dismissal (Cass. soc., July 7, 2021, No. 21-70.011).

Religious freedom and the obligation to take an oath: The Court of Cassation has ruled on the validity of dismissal for misconduct of a Paris subway transport control officer who refused to take an oath because of his religious beliefs. The Court of Cassation reversed its previous position, noting that dismissal for misconduct following an employee’s failure to swear an oath was not null and void because it could not be determined that it was based on the employee’s religious beliefs, but only considered as unfair dismissal.