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The TCC delivers its Judgment 112-Hsien-Pan-7 (2023)


    TAIPEI, May 24, 2023. The Taiwan Constitutional Court (TCC) has delivered its Judgment of the "Case on Establishing Multiple Corporate Unions in Factories or Sites under the Same Corporation" on May 19, 2023.


Principal Facts, Issues, and Procedure of the Case

    Under Article 6 of the Labor Union Act, workers may choose to organize three types of unions: corporate, industrial, and professional. The corporate union enjoys more expansive rights, such as the right to consent on certain issues on behalf of the workers, paid leaves for union representatives, etc. Following the text of Article 6 of the Labor Union Act, workers from the same factory or site of the same corporation may establish a corporate union on a factory or site scale (a "factory/site union") even if there is already one corporate union in the same corporation. However, Article 6 of the Labor Union Act did not stipulate on the definition of "(the same) factory or workplace," leaving Article 2, Paragraphs 1 and 2 of the Enforcement Rules of Labor Union Act (the disputed provisions) to elaborate instead, in which they stipulate the "factories and sites (workplace)" shall meet the criteria as "workplaces with independent personnel, budget and accounting systems" and other specific requirements on this matter.
    Petitioners of this case, the Corporate Union of the Maintenance Division of China Airlines and Corporate Union of the Sha-Lu Factory of the Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC), who both are under corporations with existing corporate unions, applied respectively to the Taoyuan City Government (then Taoyuan County Government) and the Taichung City Government for the registration of their unions in 2014 and 2015. Their cases were permitted but later revoked by the Ministry of Labor (MOL) per the administrative appeals from the existing China Airlines Corporate Union and the AIDC Corporate Union. Their cases went back and forth between the local government and the MOL. The Supreme Administrative Court dismissed them finally because the petitioners' premises did not meet the definition of a factory or site.
    The petitioners lodged constitutional complaints, arguing that (1) the disputed provisions have unduly limited the definition of "factories and sites," which violated the
Gesetzesvorbehalt principle under Article 23 of the Constitution, consequently infringing the worker's right to unionize; (2) the elements for their premises to fulfill the definition of "factories or sites" lie entirely in the employer's hands, rendering unionization on a "factory or site"-scale within a corporation nearly impossible in practice; (3) the final decisions of their cases, Supreme Administrative Court Judgments 109-Shang-584 (2022) and 110-Shang-321 (2022), are unconstitutional. 
    Their cases were consolidated and argued on February 21, 2023, with relevant documents made public on the TCC website per the requirements of the Constitutional Court Procedure Act (CCPA). Judgment 112-Hsien-Pan-7 was announced by the Court en banc at 3 p.m. on May 19, 2023. Justice Ming-Cheng TSAI wrote this Judgment. Justice Horng-Shya HUANG and Justice Chong-Wen CHANG each filed a concurring opinion. Justice Jeong-Duen TSAI, Justice Chih-Hsiung HSU (joined by Justice Jui-Ming HUANG and Justice Jau-Yuan HWANG), and Justice Hui-Chin YANG (with Justice Sheng-Lin JAN joining in Parts Two and Four) each filed an opinion dissenting in part and concurring in part. Justice Tai-Lang LU and Justice Tzung-Jen TSAI each filed an opinion dissenting in part.


Decision of the Court

    The TCC declared the disputed provisions unconstitutional but invalid later after a two-year grace period, finding a violation of the Gesetzesvorbehalt principle because it lacks specific guidelines and authorization as to how the enforcement regulations may define "factories and sites," consequently infringing the worker's right to unionize. However, the TCC noted that the criteria of "factories and sites" set in the disputed provisions constitute no violation of the principle of proportionality, as posing limitations to the formation of factory unions pertains to the realm of discretion subject to the balance between the general interest pursued and the limited labor rights. In its elaboration, the TCC found that the purpose of the disputed provisions, which is the efficacy of facilitating factory/site union registration, is legitimate; and the limitation is rationally related to the purpose. The TCC pointed out that the disputed provisions may prevent infighting due to overabundant unions under the same corporation, and may also prevent workers' power from being dispersed. For the constitutional complaints against the petitioners' court decisions, the TCC has decided to quash the decisions and refer the matter back to the Supreme Administrative Court.



  1. Full texts of the Judgment and Opinions are available on the TCC website at https://cons.judicial.gov.tw/docdata.aspx?fid=38&id=345269  (Traditional Chinese). An English summary of this Judgment will be available later on the TCC English website.
  2. The TCC’s Case News is prepared by the Department of Clerks for the Constitutional Court (Judicial Yuan) for information only and does not bind the Court. 


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