Publication of the new European directive on employment contracts

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Publication of the new European directive on employment contracts

The European Directive on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions in the European Union was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 11 July 2019.

This new directive repeals, with effect from 1 August 2022, the previous directive of 1991 currently in force, which had extended to all employers the obligation to mention in writing, the "essential elements of the employment relationship" with their employee.

This directive innovates in the following 3 aspects: the workers concerned, the content of the minimum information to be provided to the worker and the time limit for doing so.

With regard to the workers concerned, the Directive uses this term in a relatively broad sense by referring to the case law of the European Court of Justice to consider as workers: domestic workers, on-demand workers, intermittent workers, workers performing work based on cheques, platform workers, trainees and apprentices. As a result, it excludes from its scope of application only those workers whom it classifies as genuinely self-employed.

The content of the information to be provided to workers is also extended by this Directive by including, in particular, a requirement for information on probationary periods not exceeding a maximum of 6 months, the procedure for terminating the employment contract, the length of the notice period, the length of the "normal" working day or week, performance of overtime, remuneration, and the right to training granted by the employer.

Finally, the Directive provides for compulsory information in the event of specific situations such as a posting to a Member State or a third country.

Finally, whereas the 1991 Directive set a 2-month deadline for providing this mandatory information, the 2019 Directive now provides for an obligation to provide basic information "as soon as possible" and no later than within "one calendar week" from the first day of employment.

The Member States of the European Union now have, therefore, a period of 3 years to take the necessary measures to comply with this Directive.


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