COVID 19: Legal obligations & solutions for companies

12. March 2020

Corona virus covid 19: LEGAL OBLIGATIONS AND SOLUTIONS FOR COMPANIES

In the current context of COVID 19, Romanian employers/companies have certain legal obligations regarding compliance with the health and safety Regulations. Also, the companies can apply certain measures to minimalize the risks of contamination of employees, some of them are briefly described below:

1. Remote work

The labor code allows the change of the place and the way of work unilaterally or by agreement of the parties. Employees can carry on their activity remotely, following the conclusion of an additional act to the individual employment contract, when fulfilling the duties specific to the position held by the employee implies the use of information and communication technology.

2. Temporary interruption of activity

Employers can unilaterally decide to temporarily reduce/ discontinue their activity, after consulting the syndicates or the employees’ representatives, thus suspending the employment relations with the employees. In this case, the employer will have to pay the employees an allowance of at least 75% of their basic salary.

At the same time, the employers can decide that the employees will be sent in technical unemployment, with the payment of a compensation equal to 75% of the basic salary or the parties can agree that the employees will benefit during this period of leave without payment.

3. Significant measures regarding the safety and health of employees

To the extent that there is no clear indication of workplace infection, the activity must be carried out under normal conditions, with all the hygiene and protection of the employees being ensured. The employer has the obligation to provide free of charge the hygienic-sanitary materials to his employees. Those who do not comply with this can be fined between RON 3,000 and 6,000 (EUR 620 and 1,250).
Employers could/should take measures, such as:

  • implementation of remote working policies by which to establish both general rules and specific rules for exceptional situations;
  • reducing the work program or establishing a flexible program, depending on the specific activity of the employees;
  • reviewing the Internal Regulations and the policies for ensuring health and safety at work in order to establish the obligations of the parties in such situations and the sanctions applicable in case of non-compliance;
  • implementation of a business continuity insurance plan in case of threats with an impact on employees’ health.

4. Quarantine and self-isolation

Employees can benefit from medical leave, and they have the right to receive medical leave allowance of about 75% of the salary.

TPA Legal Romania can assist you with the amendments to the Labor contracts or updating of Internal Regulations.

 

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