Is the carer allowed to violate labour law?

It is in my capacity as an experienced legal practitioner that I am today given the opportunity to give my opinion on Article 29 of the bill registered at the Presidency of the National Assembly on 18 January 2018 and amended on first reading by the Senate, intended to strengthen the efficiency of the administration for a relationship of trust with the public..

It so happens that I have already looked into the offence of haggling or illegal lending of labour which consists more or less in the illegal lending of labour from one company to another, as long as it enables the application of the provisions of the law, regulations or collective labour agreement or convention to be evade (cf. art. L. 125-1 of the Labour Code).

However, Article 29 of Title II of the said bill provides for the experimentation of a "relay" in the home which makes it possible to ensure continuity of support for an elderly person losing his or her independence in the home for several successive days.

The aim is to respond to the need to relay the carers with the heaviest burden, given that the people they are helping need constant presence or care in their own home, by requesting the assignment to their home of an employee from medical or social establishments or services.

This arrangement derogates from the rules of labour law as regards both working time and daily rest periods.

This is evidenced by the fact that the total number of hours worked by an employee on behalf of the establishments or services may not exceed a ceiling of 48 hours per week on average, whereas the assessment of the ceiling includes all the hours of presence in the home and even at the place of holiday in the case of so-called respite care-giving stays.

But it gets worse, since employees would benefit during each 24-hour period from a minimum rest period of 11 consecutive hours, which can be waived.

This is how an obvious paradox appears, insofar as a subcontractor who suppresses the seniority of a seconded employee is punished for having committed the offence of bargaining and may have to pay a fine of between €30 and €150,000.00, but the carer-assistant can suppress the rest period of the seconded employee with impunity (cf. article L 152-3 of the Labour Code).