Month: November 2022

Belgium to introduce a four-day workweek option and the right to disconnect [Updated]

The Belgium government recently agreed on introducing a series of reforms aimed at boosting private sector employees’ work-life balance. The most notable changes include the option for employees to ask their employers for a four-day workweek as well as the right to disconnect. Once a draft bill outlining and explaining the new measures is introduced, it will enter into effect after it is passed by the Belgium parliament. This process will likely take months and may alter current provisions.

Ireland

Ireland to introduce sick pay for 2022 [Updated]

The Irish government recently passed the Sick Leave Act 2022 to provide all employees with up to 10 days of employer-paid sick leave. The Act enters into effect on 1 January 2023, and its implementation is phased over a four-year period from 2023 to 2026.

Australia

Australia introduces paid family and domestic violence leave

The Australian government recently introduced an amendment bill to provide employees with 10 days of employer-paid family and domestic violence leave. The Fair Work Amendment Bill 2022 was introduced on 28 July 2022, by the Australian Labor Party following the May 2022 federal election. The Bill has not passed yet. It is still unclear when the bill will pass.

Israel

Israel to introduce a health insurance reform

The government of Israel recently introduced a health insurance reform establishing a comprehensive Private Medical Insurance framework that creates a uniform structure for basic health policy. The new circular is expected to come into effect on 1 February 2023.

Globe

New remote working legislation around the world [Updated]

With the rise of technology, work from home has been a steadily growing trend for many years. Remote working has exploded since spring 2020 with quarantines, workplace closures and lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic, at least for jobs and industries that do not always require workers to be on-site.

This abrupt worldwide shift to remote work sparked new logistical and structural legal challenges that warranted many countries to pass teleworking legislation, some of which is summarized in this article.
New teleworking legislation varies widely across the countries. While some countries introduced their first teleworking general legal framework, other countries passed more detailed measures. This article will only cover permanent teleworking legislation that has entered into effect since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020. Temporary COVID-19 related measures, as well as proposed legislation not yet passed as of the publication of this article, will not be addressed.

Malaysia

Malaysia to expand family leave entitlements [Updated]

On 30 March 2022, the Malaysian Parliament passed the Employment Bill 2021 introducing several amendments to the Employment Act of 1955, including the extension of the maternity leave from 60 days to 98 days and the introduction of a seven-day employer-paid paternity leave. The new Bill will enter into effect on 1 January 2023.

Netherlands

Netherlands releases pension reform framework [Updated]

Update: The Dutch government recently announced that the pension reform will be delayed again. The new pension system, will now not come into effect until at least July 2023 (exact date still yet to be determined), more than one year later than originally planned. However, the early retirement provision allowing employees to retire up to three years before the normal retirement age, subject to the agreement of the employer, has passed and has been effective since 1 January 2021.