The Advocate General has, this morning, delivered his opinion in the Spanish case of Palacios v Cortefiel Servicios SA.
In considering whether a national law allowing for compulsory retirement upon reaching a certain age was inconsistent with the EU Equal Treatment Framwork Directive 2000, the Advocate General stated that the EU Directive does not apply to state laws setting retirement ages (paras. 63-67). And even if the Directive did apply, such a national provision was justified (paras. 72 and 78).
An Advocate General's opinion is not binding upon the ECJ, but it is unusual for it not to be followed. If the ECJ reaches the same conclusion, it does not bode well for Heyday's challenge to the UK mandatory retirement procedures contained in the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006.
Advocate General's Opinion in Palacios v Cortefiel Servicios SA