The Supreme Court rules on Equality Plans

rules on equality plans

In a recent ruling, the Supreme Court has announced a crucial decision regarding Equality Plans presented by companies, setting a precedent in the protection of gender rights in the workplace. This ruling establishes that once three months have passed following the application to register an Equality Plan, and in the event of no response from the Ministry of Labour, this Plan will be deemed to be approved on the basis of positive administrative silence. This measure guarantees that gender equality rights will not be negatively affected by bureaucratic delays, ensuring an essential element of defence for the individuals and companies concerned.

In the ruling published on 11 April, the Supreme Court also made it clear that any subsequent resolution cannot contradict the purport of the administrative silence, which means that approval on the basis of silence shall override any subsequent decision made by the Administration. This decision is particularly relevant for all those companies which have filed an application to register their Equality Plans in the Register of Collective Agreements and Equality Plans (REGCON) and are yet to receive a response.

According to our lawyer, Germán Díez:

“Thanks to the ruling made by the Supreme Court, the registration of equality plans is speeded up, for this decision prevents the tardy response of the Administration from becoming an obstacle. In this respect, confirmation of the positive tenor of administrative silence is a positive decision for the implementation of companies’ equality plans. This ruling, together with the ruling of the Supreme Court on the same day, 11 April 2024, represents a major step forward with regard to equality plans. This second ruling clears up one of the main doubts that arose concerning the negotiation of equality plans. The response provided by the Supreme Court offers a solution to the blockage that would occur in cases where there is no legal representation of workers with whom to negotiate these plans. This blockage prevented companies from complying with a legal obligation, leaving them open to possible penalties.

Therefore, the line followed by the Supreme Court is positive with respect to the effective implementation of equality plans.”

rules on equality plans rosclar

The ruling of the Supreme Court contradicts the previous position adopted by the Ministry of Labour and Social Economy, which maintained that positive administrative silence did not apply in these cases due to the transfer of public service powers to companies. However, the Court has clearly ruled that administrative silence represents a guarantee for civil rights.

This ruling brings the closure that many companies requiring the approval of their equality plans were hoping for, given that registration in REGCON is compulsory for all companies with more than 50 employees. From now on, the Administration has a maximum of three months to complete the registration of these plans. In the event that this is not done within the aforementioned period, administrative silence will be deemed positive, which will imply the automatic approval of the plan in the registry.

In this context, we would like to remind you that we offer our experience and advice to help your company draw up and register its Equality Plan. Our team of professionals is trained to guide you through the entire process, ensuring that your plan complies with all the legal requirements and that it is correctly presented to the pertinent authorities.

Having a solid Equality Plan in place is not only a legal obligation, it is also an ethical and social commitment to gender equality in the workplace. In a world in which an increasingly high value is attached to diversity and inclusion, ensuring equality of opportunity for all employees is fundamental for the success and reputation of every company. Please do not hesitate to contact us! We are here to help you build a fairer and more equitable future for everyone.

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