4 June 2020 – We are pleased to present you with Issue No. 4 of L&E Global’s weekly client circular, Reimagining Employment Law In the Era of the Coronavirus, bringing you the latest insights on the COVID-19 crisis and related employment law developments from across the globe.

Organisations across the globe are beginning to reopen, but part of reopening requires adjusting to the “new normal”, which may still include a need for some employees to work remotely. Employers should anticipate that for a myriad of reasons employees may request to continue working remotely, and alternatively a need to downsise office space for economic reasons may demand that some employees (or even entire departments) work remotely.

Across the globe, national governments and administrative bodies are providing guidelines and best practices for teleworking during this unprecedented time:

  • In the U.S. the EEOC released updated guidance regarding reasonable accommodations employers can consider for continued telework arrangements.
  • The UK Government continues to release updated guidance on working safely during COVID-19, including when it is appropriate to work from home and issues to be mindful of.
  • The French Data Protection Authority (CNIL) released guidance for employers on how to implement teleworking and best practices for employees in this context.  
  • ILO and UNICEF jointly issued guidance for employers on flexible work arrangements.

Here are a few practical tips to consider when implementing a longer-term work-from-home policy:

Make a plan.

  • Review existing resources, applicable policies, customer/client agreements to ensure work-from-home is feasible, prudent and contractually permissible.
  • Review insurance policies (e.g. employee benefits, workers’ compensation, cyber,…) to ensure coverage.
  • Outline and circulate employee best practices for maintaining a safe “workspace”.
  • Consider an employee agreement to cover remote work (e.g. adherence to privacy/confidentiality/security policies, ensuring work time is recorded, assignment expectations,…).
  • Ensure policies are applied fairly and consistently to prevent potential discrimination issues.
  • Update plan as needed.

Confirm IT team & infrastructure can support remote work.

  • Ensure data privacy and security (see below).
  • Expand IT team as needed, including help desk capacity.
  • Prepare to address systems/equipment to ensure remote work compatibility.

Ensure data privacy and security.

  • The work-from-home policy must be consistent with the company’s written information security program (WISP) to ensure that business and personal information is safeguarded:
    • Require two-factor authentication.
    • Permit access only through VPN or similar connection.
    • Ensure all employees have secure laptops/equipment.
    • Ensure employees are aware of common issues that may arise (e.g. spotting phishing attacks, knowing when to report a data incident, not sending sensitive corporate data to personal email or cloud accounts, avoiding printing sensitive corporate materials,….).

Organisations should assess the impact on management, staffing and communications as certain business functions return to the worksite, while some employees (or even entire departments) continue remote work, perhaps indefinitely. Further, organisations should ensure their HR department is equipped to handle requests for flexible work arrangements as well as reasonable accommodations, which likely would have been denied prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

» Argentina
SRT issues Recommendations for Prevention of COVID-19
• 25/05/2020
» Canada
Workplace Mental Health in the Age of COVID-19
• 27/05/20
» Chile
Special Law to Protect Jobs during COVID-19 Crisis
• 25/05/20
» China
Guiding Opinions for COVID-19-related Labour Disputes
• 25/05/20

» France
Amazon activities restricted pending COVID-19 Risk Assessment
• 25/05/20

» Germany
Face Masks in the Workplace
• 25/05/20
» India
Factory Workers Exempt from Working Hours Regulations
• 28/05/20
» Italy
‘April Decree’ would extend Ban on COVID-19 Dismissals
• 25/05/20
» Mexico
COVID-19 as an Employment Disease
• 25/05/20
» Netherlands
Government announces Third Amendment to NOW scheme
• 28/05/20

» Poland
Safe Return to Work guidelines issued by Chief Labour Inspector
• 25/05/20
» Portugal
Teleworking: a Fortuitous Event or the Future?
• 25/05/20
» Romania
National State of Alert declared from 15 May until 17 June
• 26/05/20
» Spain
COVID-19 Support Measures adopted for Vulnerable Workers
• 26/05/20
» United Kingdom
COVID-19 Healthcare Update
• 26/05/20
» United States
Fitness Industry Reopening: Exercising a New Normal
• 28/05/20
L&E Global invites you to register for our Global Webinar Series via the Registration links provided below. Our complimentary series of webinars feature some of the world’s foremost labour and employment lawyers practicing today. These renowned thought leaders present practical insights and expert analysis on a wide-range of trending legal topics - nationally, regionally and globally. We look forward to learning with you!

Returning to Business as Usual in Retail?
L&E Global Webinar

• Date: Tuesday 9 June 2020
• Time: 6:00pm CET / noon Eastern Time
• Duration: 60 minutes

» Register Now!

COVID-19 in Japan: Legal Issues and Financial Relief Options Available
Atsumi & Sakai Webinar

• Date: Tuesday 9 June 2020
• Time: 9:00am Tokyo Time
• Duration: 60 minutes

» Register Now!

Issues and Responses When Employees Refuse to Return to Work
Jackson Lewis Webinar

• Date: Wednesday 10 June 2020
• Time: 4:00pm Eastern Daylight Time
• Duration: 45 minutes

» Register Now!

Employment Litigation after COVID-19?
L&E Global Webinar

• Date: Thursday 18 June 2020
• Time: 6:00pm CET / noon Eastern Time
• Duration: 60 minutes

» Register Now!

Best practices for remote work in Latin America
L&E Global Webinar

• Date: Tuesday 23 June 2020
• Time: 6:00pm CET / noon Eastern Time
• Duration: 60 minutes

» Register Now!

Please bookmark this site for the latest developments in our webinar series.

L&E Global is pleased to provide you with full access to our Global Webinar Series Archives. To view any of our webinar presentations, please click on the links below:

How to prepare for the post-COVID reopening in Latin America!
L&E Global Webinar
• 12/05/2020

Restarting a Global Business: COVID-19 Challenges in Europe and the USA
L&E Global Webinar
• 28/04/2020

COVID-19: Your Essential Workforce Law Update in Asia-Pacific!
L&E Global Webinar
• 20/04/2020

COVID-19: Your Essential Workforce Law Update in Latin America!
L&E Global Webinar
• 8/04/2020

COVID-19: Your Essential Workforce Law Update in Europe!
L&E Global Webinar
• 23/03/2020

How COVID-19 is Impacting the Workplace in the USA, China and Europe
L&E Global Webinar
• 2/03/2020
TozziniFreire Advogados Webinar
COVID-19: Challenges and Expectations in the Consumer Goods Sector
• 02/06/2020

Flichy Grangé Avocats Webinar
COVID-19 Business Consequences: How to Reduce the Workforce
• 27/05/2020

Pusch Wahlig Workplace Law Webinar
Flexibility of Working Hours during COVID-19 Crisis
• 19/06/2020

LABLAW Webinar
COVID-19: The Need to Relaunch and Reorganise
• 22/05/2020

Cederquist Webinar
Impact of COVID-19 on Media & Entertainment Industry
• 22/05/2020

United Kingdom
Clyde & Co Webinar
Returning to Work as Lockdown Eases in Scotland
• 21/05/2020

United States
Jackson Lewis Webinars
The Impact of COVID-19 on Employers
• 21/05/2020

COVID-19 Briefing: Special Edition
• 21/05/2020

COVID-19 Briefing: Healthcare
• 21/05/2020
In the context of this unprecedented threat to the global economy, we recently launched our dedicated CORONAVIRUS IN A FLASH microsite, a virtual COVID-19 crisis resource centre for employers affected by the pandemic. Please bookmark the site in your browser.

This publication may not deal with every topic within its scope nor cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not designed to provide legal or other advice with regard to any specific case. Nothing stated in this document should be treated as an authoritative statement of the law on any particular aspect or in any specific case. Action should not be taken on this document alone. For specific advice, please contact a specialist at one of our member firms or the firm that authored this publication. The content is based on the law as of 2020.

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