Luxembourg – What’s new in employment law in 2019 – Lexology

This article summarises the most important developments anticipated in Luxembourg employment law in 2019.

By: Lorraine Chéry and Dorothée David

Firm: Castegnaro

1. Staff representation following the social elections of 12 March 2019

The law of 23 July 2015 reforming social dialogue within companies provides that the following main provisions will come into force from the date of the next elections of staff delegations that will take place on 12 March 2019. These relate to:

  • modification of the staff representation structure in the company: removal of establishment delegations, divisional delegations and delegations of young employees, in favour of the creation of a single staff delegation at company level;
  • creation of a delegation at the level of the economic and social entity;
  • abolition of the Joint Works Council;
  • specific competences assigned to the staff delegation in companies of 150 employees and more (e.g. information and consultation on technical, economic and financial matters, participation in certain company decisions);
  • the functioning of the staff delegation: expansion of the office, negotiation of office for co-decisions, etc.

2. Savings accounts for employees covered by private law

Bill no. 7324, designed to create ‘time saving’ accounts for employees covered by private law and submitted to the Chamber of Deputies on 25 June 2018 includes the following main provisions:

2.1 The time savings account would be individual and would be used to build up working hours, not money.

2.2 An employee would not be forced to credit their time savings account against their will, and the account would be limited to a maximum of 1,800 hours.

2.3 If requested in writing by the employee, the time savings account could be credited in various ways, including:

  • overtime hours;
  • compensatory leave for working on a Sunday;
  • additional days off stipulated in the employment contract or collective agreement and not taken during the current year.

2.4 The hours in the time savings account would be used when requested in writing by the employee, in principle according to the latter’s preferences, unless the needs of the department or the justified preferences of the company’s other employees contradict them. In all cases, the leave requested should be scheduled at least one month in advance.

The introduction of a time savings account could be done, either within the context of a collective agreement or, if no such agreement exists, on the basis of an inter-professional agreement.

Given the progress of parliamentary works, this bill should lead to the publication of a law in 2019.

3. Exemption from the requirement to declare certain short-term postings

Under the provisions of Bill no. 7319, submitted to the Chamber of Deputies on 20 June 2018, the obligations on workers based outside Luxembourg relating to declaring postings in the country would no longer apply to the following short-term placements:

  • qualified or specialist employees of a company based abroad who come to Luxembourg to carry out servicing, maintenance or repair work on machines, for a maximum period of work no longer than five calendar days per month;
  • employees of a company based abroad who come to Luxembourg in order to work in roles such as trainer, lecturer or speaker, or in order to attend training sessions, conference or meetings relating to work, as long as these activities do not exceed five calendar days per month.

Given the limited progress of parliamentary works since the bill was tabled, it is not certain that this bill will lead to the publication of a law in 2019.

4. Workplace internships for school pupils and students

A Bill (no. 7265) designed to regulate internships for school pupils and students was submitted to the Chamber of Deputies on 19 March 2018. Under this proposal a new chapter would be added to the Labour Code, filling an almost complete legal gap on this issue. In particular, the Bill specifies that the legal provisions relating to working time, weekly rest, statutory bank holidays, annual leave and health and safety in the workplace stipulated by the Labour Code would apply to interns.

Given the progress of parliamentary work, this bill should lead to the publication of a law in 2019.

5. Apprenticeships and professional internships

A Bill (no. 7268) on professional training was submitted to the Chamber of Deputies on 22 March 2018. In particular, the Bill plans to add provisions currently in place for apprenticeship and internship contracts, introduced by the Law of 19 December 2008, to the Labour Code. Among other things, this would help to consolidate legal protection, as any disputes would have to be handled by the labour court. The new applicable rules would be included in a single chapter entitled ‘Le droit de former, le contrat d’apprentissage et la convention de stage de formation’ (The right to train, the apprenticeship contract and the training internship agreement) in Book 1 of the Labour Code.

Given the progress of parliamentary work, this bill should lead to the publication of a law in 2019.

6. Improvements to the legal system of internal and external redeployment of employees

Bill 7309 (submitted the Chamber of Deputies on 28 May 2018) aims to make improvements to the system of internal and external professional redeployment of employees, which was reformed by the law of 23 July 2015. The bill mainly modifies provisions of the Labour Code relating to occupational medicine and the procedure for declarations of unfitness for work as well as those relating to the professional redeployment itself.

The improvements are aimed in particular at optimising the procedures in place and at improving the financial situation of people required to undertake an occupational re-employment. It takes into account suggestions made by those who have been the subject of of a professional redeployment, employers and the unions.

Given the limited progress of parliamentary work since the bill was tabled, it is not certain that this bill will lead to the publication of a law in 2019.

7. Additional holidays in 2019

On 11 January 2019, the government agreed to a bill creating two additional days of holiday: one day of legal public holiday and one additional day of annual leave in 2019.

This bill has not yet been drafted and tabled before the Chamber of Deputies.

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