Spain: Video surveillance systems allow disciplinary dismissals without notifying the employee

A new Supreme Court ruling on video surveillance systems has ruled that such systems allow dismissals on disciplinary grounds, even if the employee has not been informed that the images recorded could be used for disciplinary purposes.
Until now, the employer must inform the employees about the video surveillance system installation. Otherwise, the proof will not be accepted by the Court, as the employee has to be informed about it.

In two recent cases in which the company had informed the employees about the installation of the system and the location of every camera, but not about the possibility of using such images for disciplinary purposes, the Superior Court rejected the appeal of the company and declared the dismissals as unfair, due to the lack of information.

However, the Supreme Court has ruled that it is enough to inform the employees about the installation of the system and the location of cameras, and that it is unnecessary to inform the employees about the possibility of using such images for disciplinary purposes.

According to the Supreme Court, the doctrine and the case-law, the security measure (a video surveillance system in these cases) has to meet the principle of proportionality which means:

• Suitability judgment: The measure is likely to achieve the proposed objective.
• Necessity judgment: The measure is necessary, in the sense that there is no other more moderate measure for the achievement of the purpose.
• Proportionality judgment in strict sense: The measure is balanced, because what derives from it is more beneficial than damages on other goods or values in conflict.

For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Spain, please contact Bufete Suárez de Vivero, S.L.
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