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28 January 2015
On December 3 2014 Parliament approved Law 183/2014 – the so-called 'Jobs Act' – which instructs the government to enact within six months numerous decrees necessary to bring about significant changes to Italian labour law.
The law provides for contracts with increased protections for new employees. In particular, the new contract form omits the provision regarding reinstatement in the event of dismissal for economic reasons in favour of a new provision for compensation that increases proportionally with length of service.
Previously, in case of termination for economic reasons, an illegally fired employee could obtain reinstatement for a manifest lack of grounds for dismissal. The new law maintains the reinstatement provision only for invalid or discriminatory dismissal, as well as for specific types of disciplinary dismissal.
The new permanent contract form with enhanced safeguards will become the new dominant form of employment relationship.
On December 24 2014 the first decree regarding the issue of dismissal was approved. It confirms that the reinstatement provision has been maintained for:
In regards to dismissals for cause, justified reasons or objective economic reasons, the decree provides for an indemnity amounting to two months' salary for each year of service. For collective dismissals, the indemnity can amount to no less than four and no more than 24 months' salary.
The Jobs Act amends the rules governing the demotion of workers. At present, the employee cannot be assigned to duties lower than those provided for in his or her hiring contract. However, case law has watered down this prohibition with certain exceptions (eg, the employer can assign lower duties in order to avoid dismissing the employee). The recent reform allows the employer to change workers' duties in case of company reorganisation or restructuring.
It is expected that a review will be undertaken of the regulation of remote control of work systems and tools under Article 4 of Law 300/70. The new measures will cover only system-wide controls – not specific controls over individual employees – and will balance production and organisational needs with the need to protect the dignity and privacy of employees.
Simplified procedures have been envisaged for the employee resignation process in order to ensure certainty as to the date of resignation, as well as the employee's willingness to resign or the consensual resolution of employment.
The old welfare payment (ASPI) will be calculated based on contributions paid by the employee.
In the event of termination of a business or a business branch, access to unemployment insurance (CIG) will be subject to the depletion of solidarity contracts and the duration of this insurance will be reviewed.
The procedure and requirements established to manage the working relationship between employer and employee will be clarified and simplified in order to reduce the administrative burden on employees.
The Jobs Act introduces maternity compensation for all categories of employed women and the right for 'parasubordinate' working mothers (ie, consultants) to receive assistance even where the employer does not make contributions. Moreover, employees of the same employer may transfer all or part of their additional holidays to colleagues with minor children who are seriously ill.
For further information on this topic please contact Andrea Stanchi or Annamaria Pedroni at Stanchi Studio Legale by telephone (+39 02 546 9522), fax (+39 02 551 91641) or email (email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com).
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