Changes to the Labour Code are awaiting the President’s signature. Transparent employment conditions, new leaves, new rights for employees
At the end of last week, the Seym passed another amendment to the Labour Code. This time, the amendment consists of implementation of two directives: the Work-Life Balance Directive and the Directive on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions. The new regulations are to take effect 21 days after their publication, and employers will need to introduce changes to the existing employment documentation, in particular to employment contracts and employee handbooks (employment regulations), as well as their internal procedures and training policies.
- Employment contracts for fixed terms will be terminated in the same way as those for indefinite terms. This means, in particular, that the notice of termination of a fixed-term contract must indicate the cause of termination, and the termination itself must be consulted with the trade union, if any.
- Essential changes are planned in respect of contracts for a trial period. Their duration will depend on the duration of the next contract to bind the parties, i.e. the final contract. Moreover, contracts for a trial period can be extended to include the time of the holiday leave and other justified absences from work, and they can be prolonged if such prolongation is justified by the type of work.
- Onboarding – the scope of information about the employee’s conditions of work will be broader. The employer will be required to inform about salary components other than specified in the contract of employment, the employment termination procedure, and the training policy adopted by the employer.
- A new care leave will be introduced. This is going to be unpaid leave of 5 days per year, granted to an employee who needs to provide care or support to a family member or a person living in the same household.
- There will be provisions governing time off work given due to force majeure. The time off work can take two business days or 16 hours per a year, and the salary during this time will amount to 50% of remuneration.
- The parental leave will be extended by 9 weeks, and the allowance for the leave period will be set at 70% of the assessment base. The leave can be divided into maximum 5 parts.
- Persons who bring up children up to 8 years of age will have certain new rights. It will not be possible to require such an employee to do overtime, to work at night, under an interrupted working time system or away from their regular place of work. Additionally, such employees can apply for flexible work.
- Certain groups of employees will be subject to an additional protection from dismissal. There will be a ban on termination of employment with employees who are pregnant and during their maternity leave; also, termination will not be possible from the date of the employee filing a request for maternity leave, paternity leave, parental leave and care leave.
- The amendment provides for two additional breaks from work. They will be used for employees whose daily working time is longer than 9 and 16 hours respectively. Each of the breaks will take 15 minutes.
- Limitation of the non-competition requirement – it will not be possible to prohibit work for another employer. It will only be possible to prohibit competitive business activity (under a separate written non-competition agreement, subject to the conditions specified in the Labour Code in this respect).
On Thursday, 16 March 2023, we are holding the HR Business Breakfast during which we plan to discuss the new regulations in detail. For an invitation to the meeting and for more information see here.