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Newsletter - Calamity Situation

Renewal Labour implications

Calamity Situation - Renewal

Labour implications

Given the epidemiological situation in Portugal, the Council of Ministers approved last Saturday the resolution renewing the calamity situation within the continental national territory, from midnight, November 4, 2020 until 11:59pm on November 15, 2020.

According to this Resolution, these are now classified as “high risk” municipalities, where the duty to remain at home - as one of the exceptional measures – is applied.

In this regard, it is expected that citizens will refrain from circulating in public areas and streets, as well as in private areas and streets equivalent to public roads, with the exception of authorized displacements, such as displacements for the purpose of performing professional activities or similar, for the acquisition of goods and services, job search or job offer response, among others.

On the other hand, and within the scope of the measures approved for the renewal of the calamity situation, Decree-Law 94-A/2020 was approved on 3rd November, 2020, which establishes a set of relevant measures in the labour area, in force since 4th November, which we highlight:

Teleworking in municipalities considered “High Risk” - applicable to employees working or living in these areas

What is the rule?

The rule is that teleworking is mandatory, regardless of the employment relationship, without the need for a written agreement between the employer and the employee.

And are there any exceptions?

Yes, in case the employee's duties do not allow and does not have the conditions to perform them from home:

The EMPLOYER must demonstrate, in writing and with supporting reasons, that the functions in question are not compatible with the teleworking regime or the lack of adequate technical conditions for their implementation, and must inform the employee of its decision.

The employee may, within 3 working days after the employer's communication, request the Authority for Working Conditions - "ACT" - to verify the facts claimed by the employer.

ACT has 5 days to analyse the employee's request and take a final decision, taking into consideration the activity for which the employee was hired and the previous exercise of the activity in a telework regime or through other means of distance working.

If the impediment is from the EMPLOYEE, he/she must justify, in writing, the impossibility of performing the duties from home.

What is foreseen in terms of work instruments, rights and duties of the employees?

It is up to the employer to guarantee the work and communication equipment necessary for the employee to perform the work from home.

When this is not possible and provided the employee's consent, teleworking can be carried out through the means the employee has.

On the other hand, the employee will have the same rights and duties as the other employees, with no reduction of retribution, maintaining the right to receive the meal allowance as already received.

The limits of the normal working period and other conditions of work, safety and health are also safeguarded, as well as the reparation of damages arising from work accidents or occupational diseases.

Provisional Prophylatic Isolation Declaration

It is foreseen a provisional declaration of preventive prophylactic isolation, in electronic and dematerialized format, following a contact with the National Health Service Contact Center (SNS24).

Authors

Susana Afonso
Susana Afonso
Partner
Lisbon
Picture of Sofia Mateus
Sofia Mateus
Partner
Lisbon
Picture of Tiago Magalhaes
Tiago de Magalhães
Associate
Lisbon
Catarina Reino Prudêncio
Trainee
Lisbon
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