Employment Law Tracker

Filion Wakely Thorup Angeletti and L&E Global are pleased to present you with the most recent employment law updates, webinars & international events for January 2020.


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Australia: Changes to Annualised Salaries – Are You Ready? – Harmers Workplace Lawyers Webinar
If your employees are covered by a modern award and you are already paying (or considering paying) your employees an annualised salary, your business will be impacted by the recent amendments to annualised salary clauses in modern awards, which will take effect from 1 March 2020. The Fair Work Commission’s decision to amend annualised salary clauses will affect over 20 modern awards, including 3 modern awards which did not previously contain an annualised salary clause. The changes to annualised salary clauses will significantly increase the obligations on employers in relation to record keeping and annual reconciliations. Accordingly, it is imperative that your business has the appropriate systems in place prior to 1 March 2020.
• Thursday, 13 February 2020 - 12.30 – 1.30pm AEDT » Register Now!

Issues to Consider in Starting Up New Operations: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Mexico – L&E Global Webinar
Latin America remains an attractive and critical region for expansion and start-up operations. From a labor and employment law point of view, however, new operations encounter a number of complex and important issues in determining whether to set up local subsidiaries or branches, use staffing agencies/PEO’s, or retain independent contractors. This webinar will consider these strategic issues in key Latin America jurisdictions as well as identify the key risks and pitfalls you need to be aware of. Join this insightful webinar to better manage the related risks for your business and ask the questions you always wanted to ask!
• Thursday, 27 February 2020 - 6 pm Central European Time / noon Eastern Time » Register Now!

Global Me Too: Focus on new developments in Asia – L&E Global Webinar
While the MeToo movement has perhaps attracted the most attention in the United States and other Western countries, key jurisdictions in Asia have experienced MeToo initiatives of their own and are rapidly addressing issues of gender discrimination and harassment both culturally and legally. In this webinar, counsel from China, Japan, India and South Korea will review recent developments in their respective countries and discuss how these developments should be taken into account in your global strategy to investigate, address, and prevent gender discrimination and harassment in your workplace.
• Monday, 23 March 2020
This webinar is offered several times. Select the date and time that works best for you:
- 9 am CET / 5 pm Japan Standard Time / 4 pm China Time
» Register Now!
- 6 pm CET / 9 am Pacific Standard Time / noon Eastern Time
» Register Now!

Employee co-determination in European jurisdictions: France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Poland – L&E Global Webinar
Co-determination is the practice of workers of an enterprise having the right to vote for representatives on the board of directors in a company. It also refers to staff having binding rights in work councils on issues in their workplace. Co-determination primarily exists: to reduce management-labour conflict by improving and systematizing communication channels; to increase bargaining power of workers at the expense of owners by means of legislation; and to correct market failures by means of public policy. In this webinar the speakers will provide insight in the co-determination differences and pitfalls in Germany, France, Italy, The Netherlands and Poland.
• Tuesday, 7 April 2020 - 5 pm Central European Time / 4 pm GMT » Register Now!


Argentina | Allende & Brea

Impending Changes of Legislation: Argentina: Mandatory salary increase for private sector workers A mandatory salary increase must be granted to all employees, regardless if they are under any specific collective bargaining agreement. The increase for each employee was established in AR$ 3,000 (paid with January´s salary) and an additional increase of AR$ 1,000 (as of February), meaning a total increase of AR$ 4,000. Those employees who have a reduced working day, the increase should be granted proportionately. Agricultural workers and personnel of private households are excluded from this measure » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Argentina, please contact Nicolás Grandi, Partner at Allende & Brea (www.allendebrea.com) at ng@allendebrea.com.ar.

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Australia | Harmers Workplace Lawyers

Impending Changes of Legislation: Australia: Proposed Religious Discrimination Bill – Changing the Landscape of Federal Discrimination Legislation The Federal Government has released a second draft of its Religious Discrimination Bill 2019 (Cth), following widespread criticism of the first draft. If passed, the Bill will add religion as a protected attribute in a wide range of areas of public life, including employment, and may have serious implications on employers and employees. Amongst other things, the Bill provides that religious statements of belief do not constitute discrimination for the purposes of any of the currently protected attributes (age, sex, sexual orientation, race, marital status and disability), provided they are not malicious and are not likely to harass, vilify or incite hatred or violence against another person or group of persons » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Australia, please contact Michael Harmer, Partner at Harmers Workplace Lawyers (www.harmers.com.au) at michael.harmer@Harmers.com.au.

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Belgium | Van Olmen & Wynant

Latest Case Law: Belgium: Age limit on recruitment, a difficult balance Even if there are objective reasons for setting an age limit for applicants, the employer must duly justify a direct distinction. In a recent judgment, the Brussels Labour Court carried out a meticulous justification test and ruled that an age limit of 25 for the recruitment of air traffic controllers constitutes discrimination » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Belgium, please contact Chris Van Olmen, Partner at Van Olmen & Wynant (www.vow.be) at chris.van.olmen@vow.be.

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Canada | Filion Wakely Thorup Angeletti

Latest Case Law: Canada: The Termination Clause Saga Continues A recent decision by the Court of Appeal for Ontario highlights the importance of well-drafted employment contracts. Employers should ensure that termination clauses do not, even inadvertently, contract out of the ESA by providing less than minimum entitlements to employees. As this case demonstrates, where an ambiguity in the termination clause exists, Ontario courts will resolve it in favour of employees » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Canada, please contact Robert Bayne, Partner at Filion Wakely Thorup Angeletti (www.filion.on.ca) at rbayne@filion.on.ca.

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Chile | Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos

Latest Case Law: Chile: Labour protection for employees rendering services in the public sector While the possibility of government employees being able to benefit from the labour protection procedure is in no way recognising the application of substantive standards of the Labour Code, there is no doubt that they are empowered to use the employment protection procedures to denounce the violation of their ‘essential rights’ suffered as a result of their contractual relationship with government entities » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Chile, please contact Ricardo Tisi, Partner at Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos (www.cariola.cl) at rtisi@cariola.cl.

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China | Zhong Lun Law Firm

Latest Case Law: China: Termination based on employee’s detention as part of a criminal investigation was held to be wrongful Shanghai court ruled that the termination of an employee who had been detained as part of a criminal investigation was unlawful. The court stressed that ‘detention’ is not equal to a ‘conviction’ of a crime, which is a permissible statutory cause for termination » Read More

Other Observations: China: Restriction for setting up a wholly-foreign-owned human resource services agency is abolished Based on principle of offering the same treatment to both domestic and foreign capital, China has cancelled the restriction for setting up a wholly-foreign-owned human resource services agency, which is believed to attract more foreign investment in the HR services industry » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in China, please contact Carol Zhu, Partner at Zhong Lun Law Firm (www.zhonglun.com) at carol.zhu@zhonglun.com.

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Colombia | López & Asociados

Latest Case Law: Colombia: Summary of Recent Labour and Employment Law Developments In the past month, there have been several labour and employment law developments, chief among them: i) government establishes the minimum wage for 2020 and ii) new tax exemptions are put in place » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Colombia, please contact Alejandro Castellanos, Partner at López & Asociados (www.lopezasociados.net) at alejandro.castellanos@lopezasociados.net.

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European Union | Van Olmen & Wynant

Latest Case Law: European Union: Court of Justice rules that Hungarian workers aboard an international train are not posted because of lack of sufficient connection to “hosting” Member State It is not always easy to discern whether employees working in the international transport sector fall under the scope of the Posting of Workers Directive. However a recent ruling seeks to clarify this issue, wherein the court held that Hungarian workers aboard an international train from Budapest to Munich and back, should not be qualified as posted workers, as their work does not have a sufficient connection with the territory of another Member State » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in European Union, please contact Chris Van Olmen, Partner at Van Olmen & Wynant (www.vow.be) at chris.van.olmen@vow.be.

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France | Flichy Grangé Avocats

Latest Case Law: France: The dismissal of a sick employee during the guarantee period of employment is abusive If the applicable collective agreement provides for a one-year employment guarantee period in the event of illness, an employee cannot be dismissed due to the consequences of her absence due to illness after only one month of absence » Read More

Impending Changes of Legislation: France: The Retirement Reforms at the heart of the political debate The second half of President Macron’s term has so far been dominated by the project to reform the retirement system. The reform implements a common universal system to replace the current 42 systems. This has led to great political and social debate, with a national strike that began on 5 December 2019 and is still continuing » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in France, please contact Joël Grangé, Partner at Flichy Grangé Avocats (www.flichygrange.com) at grange@flichy.com.

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Germany | Pusch Wahlig Workplace Law

Latest Case Law: Germany: Continued payment of remuneration in the event of an incapacity to work due to sickness The statutory entitlement to continued remuneration in the event of an incapacity to work due to sickness is limited to six weeks. This also applies if during the incapacity to work, a new sickness, based on a different medical condition occurs that also results in an incapacity to work. In such a case, a new claim to continued payment of remuneration for another six weeks only arises if the first incapacity to work had already ended at the time the second sickness occurred » Read More

Impending Changes of Legislation: Germany: New Year, New Laws The New Year 2020 has barely even begun and yet legal changes concerning minimum wages, immigration and Brexit have already taken place or are expected to soon be implemented » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Germany, please contact Dr. Tobias Pusch, Partner at Pusch Wahlig Workplace Law (www.pwwl.de) at pusch@pwwl.de.

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India | IndusLaw

Impending Changes of Legislation: India: Notification issued mandating industries to give preference locals for jobs in Karnataka The State Government of Karnataka has amended the Karnataka Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Rules 1961, whereby it mandates public and private sector industries to give priority to local Kannada- speaking individuals for local jobs » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in India, please contact Avik Biswas, Partner at IndusLaw (www.induslaw.com) at avik.biswas@induslaw.com.

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Italy | LABLAW Studio Legale

Latest Case Law: Italy: Collective dismissals before and after Jobs Act now under review The disparity in treatment caused by the coexistence of two different sanctioning regimes governing illegitimate collective dismissals of employees hired before and after the “Jobs Act” took effect on 7 March 2015, is notably problematic. The Court of Naples therefore, has asked the European Court of Justice and the Italian Constitutional Court to weigh-in on this matter » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Italy, please contact Luca Failla, Partner at LABLAW – Studio Legale (www.lablaw.com) at l.failla@lablaw.com.

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Luxembourg | KLEYR GRASSO

Impending Changes of Legislation: Luxembourg: Indexation of wages, salaries and pensions New indexation of wages, salaries and pensions as of 1 January 2020 » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Luxembourg, please contact Christian Jungers, Partner at KLEYR | GRASSO (www.kleyrgrasso.com) at christian.jungers@kleyrgrasso.com.

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Mexico | De La Vega & Martinez Rojas S.C.

Impending Changes of Legislation: Mexico: President creates new public administrative body to manage conciliation processes The newly created Conciliation and Registration Centre will function as a decentralised body of the public administration. Its main objective is to substantiate and conduct the conciliation process, which will have to be depleted by the employees and employers, either in collective or individual matters » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Mexico, please contact Oscar De La Vega, Partner at De La Vega & Martinez Rojas S.C. (www.dlvmr.com.mx) at ODelaVega@dlvmr.com.mx.

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The Netherlands | Palthe Oberman

Impending Changes of Legislation: The Netherlands: Fundamental changes in employment law with effect from 1 January 2020 The new year witnessed the entry into force of the Balanced Labour Market Act, with changes regarding the following topics: i) Introduction of new ground for dismissal; ii) New calculation of transition payment and maximum payment; iii) Relaxation of provisions on succession of fixed-term employment contracts; iv) On-call workers; v) Payrolling; and vi) Change in unemployment insurance contributions » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in the Netherlands, please contact Christiaan Oberman, Partner at Palthe Oberman (www.paltheoberman.nl) at oberman@paltheoberman.nl.

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Poland | A. Sobczyk & Wspolpracownicy

Latest Case Law: Poland: Supreme Court verdict on overtime work in task-based working time system The Supreme Court held that in a task-based working time system, even if the tasks entrusted to an employee could not possibly be performed during normal working hours, this does not, in itself, release the employee from the obligation to prove the specific number of overtime hours to be paid » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Poland, please contact Prof. Arkadiusz Sobczyk, Partner at A. Sobczyk & Wspolpracownicy (www.sobczyk.com.pl) at arkadiusz.sobczyk@sobczyk.com.pl.

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Romania | Magda Volonciu & Asociatii

Impending Changes of Legislation: Romania: 30.000 working permits for foreign workers in 2020 The maximum number of working permits that have been authorised to be issued in 2020 for workers outside the EU and EEC is 30.000. The maximum contingent is the largest approved to date » Read More
Romania: New minimum wages and guaranteed payments take effect in January 2020 As from January 2020, employees will receive a higher minimum wage, set at 2.230 RON (approx. 467 EUR) and employers will be required to pay, at least, the relevant minimum wage to all full time employees. For positions that require higher education, 2.350 RON (approx. 492 EUR) is the new fixed wage. Wages were not increased universally however; the minimum wage for construction sector employees will remain the same » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Romania, please contact Magda Volonciu, Partner at Magda Volonciu & Asociatii (www.volonciu.ro) at magdavolonciu@volonciu.ro.

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Spain | Suárez de Vivero

Latest Case Law: Spain: Are common law partners entitled to paid leave in case of marriage as regulated in the collective agreement for married couples? The Supreme Court of Spain has ruled that paid leave in case of marriage, as provided for in the relevant collective agreement, cannot be applied to situations of common law partners or to other models of continuous familial cohabitation. The difference in treatment does not violate the principle of equality, as it deals with different realities which are not equivalent » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in Spain, please contact Iván Suarez, Partner at Suárez de Vivero (www.bufetesuarez.com) at isuarez@bufetesuarez.com.

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United Kingdom | Clyde & Co

Latest Case Law: UK: Discrimination – “no beards” policy is religious discrimination An employment tribunal rules that a recruitment agency had indirectly discriminated against a practising Sikh when it refused to keep him on its books because he would not shave his beard for religious reasons » Read More
UK: TUPE – An employment tribunal considers whether workers qualify for protection under TUPE In a potentially significant decision for service providers and other employers acquiring businesses, an employment tribunal decides for the first time that "workers", rather than just traditional employees, qualify for protection under the Transfer of Undertaking (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE) » Read More
UK: Discrimination – An employment tribunal rules that ethical veganism is a protected belief under discrimination law In a landmark decision, an employment tribunal judge has ruled that ethical veganism is a philosophical belief that is capable of protection under discrimination law. This means that ethical vegans may be entitled to similar legal protections in the workplace as those who hold religious and other philosophical beliefs » Read More

Impending Changes of Legislation: UK: IR35 – Government to review the proposed changes to the off-payroll working rules Three months before the new rules are due to come into effect, the government has launched a review into changes to the off-payroll working rules for the private sector to address concerns about how they will be implemented » Read More
UK: Employment Reforms and Brexit The revised Withdrawal Agreement Bill, which paves the way for the UK's exit from the EU, contains some changes which may have an impact on future employment law » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in the United Kingdom, please contact Robert Hill, Partner at Clyde & Co (www.clydeco.com) at robert.hill@clydeco.com.

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United States | Jackson Lewis P.C.

Latest Case Law: USA: EEOC Rescinds Policy Opposing Mandatory Arbitration of Employment Discrimination Claims The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has rescinded its position that mandatory arbitration agreements that cover employment discrimination claims undermine the enforcement of U.S. anti-discrimination laws. This policy change is consistent with recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions that have endorsed the use of arbitration agreements, including in the employment context » Read More

Impending Changes of Legislation: USA: House Passes Bill to Ratify Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico, With Monitoring of Mexico’s Labour Reform The U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation to ratify the United States-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement (USMCA) and create an unprecedented level of oversight over another country’s labour relations. If the bill becomes law, it could prompt even greater reforms to Mexico’s labour laws » Read More

Other Observations: USA: 2020 – The Year Ahead for Employers and the California Year-End Summary publications now available 2020 - The Year Ahead for Employers is a collection of national trends, legislation, regulation and litigation that are expected to have a significant impact on the workplace in 2020. The California Year-End Summary is a compilation of laws and regulations passed in California in 2019 with implications for businesses in and outside of the state » Read More

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For more information on these articles or any other issues involving labour and employment matters in the United States, please contact John Sander, Principal at Jackson Lewis P.C. (www.jacksonlewis.com) at John.Sander@jacksonlewis.com.

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