Court orders EDP to pay €5,000 to ex-employee in latest breach of deal

  • Lusa
  • 16 February 2022

EDP has been ordered by a court in Lisbon to pay more than €5,000 to a worker who reported a breach of a pre-retirement agreement signed in 2015.

Energias de Portugal (EDP) has been ordered by a court in Lisbon to pay more than €5,000 to a worker who reported a breach of a pre-retirement agreement signed in 2015, the company’s seventh conviction in such cases.

In total, 18 workers were involved in the seven lawsuits in which EDP has been convicted – all deputy directors or directors and one board member – with the total value of the fines ordered by the courts, at December 31, 2021, being more than €155,000.

In this latest ruling, on Monday, details of which Lusa saw on Wednesday, the Judicial Court of the District of Lisbon condemns EDP to pay €2,703.09 that was due by December 31, 2020, relating to the updating of the worker’s pre-retirement benefits. It also ordered the company to update the values of these benefits between January 2021 and the termination of the agreement, so raising the total amount to be paid to €5,318.69.

The plaintiff in question is part of a group of 18 former employees who filed lawsuits against EDP, arguing that the company had included in their pre-retirement agreements a clause that guaranteed them the annual updating of their benefits under the same conditions as those established under collective bargaining for continuing employees.

These former employees, who had worked for the company for over 30 years, were among those who left the company in 2014 as part of a programme organised by the company (and dubbed “M60”) that culminated in the conclusion of pre-retirement agreements at the end of that year and, in 2015, of the pre-retirement agreements themselves.

The first sentence, issued by the Porto Judicial Court, dates to 3 December 2018 and relates to five employees; EDP appealed the decision but the Porto Court of Appeal upheld the original ruling on 19 November 2019. In this case, EDP was ordered to pay €24,000 and to update, from then on, the value of pre-retirement benefits.

The second sentence is dated December 21, 2018 and was handed down by the Lisbon Judicial Court, with five other former employees as plaintiffs. EDP was ordered to pay €28,602 euros, plus interest, and also to update from then on the value of the pre-retirement benefits (bringing the payout to €28,000) and could not appeal because the amount requested by each plaintiff was less than €5,000.

The third sentence, is from March 27 2019, concerning a lawsuit filed by two former employees in the Lisbon Judicial Court. EDP was ordered to pay €8,401.05 to one ex-employee and €3,113.04 to another; it appealed the decision but the Lisbon Appeal Court upheld it at the end of October 2020.

In a fourth sentence, dated June 11, 2021, and concerning a worker, the Judicial Court of the District of Braga ordered the company to pay €44,039.26.

Around three months later, on September 20, 2021, and after the company failed to appear at a scheduled formal meeting of the parties or to contest the claim, the Porto Judicial Court ordered EDP to pay another plaintiff a sum of around €25,660, including updated instalments and interest.

The sixth sentence is from the Lisbon Judicial Court and dates from January 27 this year, and relates to a trial that was scheduled for 20 March 2020 and had been postponed sine die because of the pandemic. In this case, the judge ended up dismissing proceedings and ordering EDP to pay more than €38,000 to three workers, based on evidence in the file, namely a previous sentence.

In addition to these cases, the trial of a former employee’s case that has been postponed three times in the Lisbon Judicial Court is scheduled for 28 April. The lawsuit was filed in 2019, with a value of €18,210.46 until September 30, 2019, which if updated to April 30, 2022, would result in a total value of more than €37,000.