Working Time Directive, anyone know anything?


Distinguished Member
I know that the WTD states a few things, eg you cannot work more than 48 hours a week, you must have suitable breaks, you must have gaps between shifts etc.

But my question is, are these guidelines as in, the employer cannot force you, or you cannot choose to do it? I know there is an opt out clause where you can choose to forego those rights, but I am in a different situation.

I work 2 jobs, and once a week, I work midnight to half 8, and then work 9 to 5 in the other job. Nobody is forcing me, I just need the money as I'm getting married!

Is it legal for me to do this?

PS, tonight I'm working midnight to half 8 in job A, then 9 to 4 in job B, then 6 to 12 in job A again so essentially a 24 hour shift! That is a 1-off though!
Last edited:

Deleted member 13294

I must admit I don't know how it applies when you have 2 jobs.

However, you are allowed to opt out of the WTD within a single job. And my guess is that this would be the same even if you have 2 jobs.


Well-known Member
One of the reasonable steps that an employer is expected to take in ensuring that the maximum working week is not exceeded is to enquire whether workers hold other employment (or to request that they be notified if a worker starts work elsewhere). In instances where a worker (except those who operate unmeasured working time) holds more than one job resulting in an average working week in excess of 48 hours it is likely to be a requirement that they sign an individual agreement (see Section 2.3) to provide the employer with a record that the worker is waiving their protection under this aspect of the Working Time Regulations of their own volition. However, it should be noted that approval would not normally be given for a department to employ an existing member of University staff in a second job that would result in a working commitment in excess of the normal working week for the appropriate staff grade. It is advised that any department which encounters this scenario contact its Personnel Officer for advice.

It is therefore a requirement that departments ensure that they ask all new starters (in the appropriate staff groups) whether they have employment elsewhere and for an indication of the hours worked. Existing workers should be informed that they must notify the departmental administrator or other most appropriate person if they take up employment elsewhere, even on a temporary basis, in order that the department can ensure that it complies with the Working Time provisions regarding the maximum working week. Records need to be kept of any workers that have several engagements and copies of any individual agreements that result from these situations should also be kept on file.

That's specific to Oxford University but it quotes the necessary details of the Working Time Directive.

Deleted member 13294

PS, tonight I'm working midnight to half 8 in job A, then 9 to 4 in job B, then 6 to 12 in job A again so essentially a 12 hour shift! That is a 1-off though!

You must be tired already - by my reckoning that is a 24 hour shift... :cool:


Distinguished Member
Being pretty general here, as everywhere is different, but...

As you mentioned, employers usually have a clause to cover themselves in their contract with you which states something along the lines of "I agree that as part of this role I may occasionally have to work more than 48 hours per week, and I therefore opt out of adherence with the WTD". Every job I've had has had that, but it rarely comes into play. I think it's >48 hours per week continuously over a 17 week period, or something like that.

There's also usually a clause to say you can't work a second job without express written consent of your "main" employer.

First step would be to check your employment contract(s) and see what you're tied to.


Distinguished Member
Both jobs are actually at the same site, although with different employers, so no driving in the middle. And I get to sleep a fair bit during the night shifts so I'm not even all that tired, unless it's a busy night. Both jobs are clerical.

24 hour shifts are a rarity, the one I'm currently in the middle of is the first I've done and more than likely the last. Normally the worst it gets is midnight until 5pm, (17 hours).

Physically it doesn't really bother me at all, I usually have late nights and early mornings anyway so I'm not used to much sleep. Just wondering if the bosses would be annoyed. I think my boss in the part time job knows, but the main employer doesn't. They know I do about 14 hours a week extra and that I do night shifts, but not that I do nights and days in one go.


Active Member

The latest video from AVForums

Podcast: CES '22 TV Announcement Round-up, Plus, Most Anticipated Movies of 2022 and More...
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom