The Act provides that the entitlement of agency workers to the same pay has retrospective effect to 5 December 2011.
The Act also provides that entitlement to the other basic working and employment conditions is effective only from 16th May 2012.
The deadline for transposing the Directive into Irish law was 5 December 2011 but the Irish Government missed the deadline and the legislation was enacted on 16th May 2012.
In accordance with the EU legal principle of ‘direct effect’, the directive applies to public sector organisations. It provides that where a Member State fails to implement a directive within the time limit set down the Directive is deemed to have been implemented into that Member State’s law from the implementation date. This means that public sector agency workers can rely on the Directive from 5th December 2011. For example, where public sector agency workers become entitled to increased annual leave entitlements they do so from the 5th December 2011, even though the legislation provides that such an entitlement is effective only from 16th May 2012.