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More work-life balance – Which changes will Collective Labour Agreement no. 162 bring

Publications | Employment Law Team

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A new collective labour agreement no. 162 was concluded within the National Labour Council to transpose European Directive 2019/1158 of 20 June 2019 on work-life balance for parents and family carers (Work-Life Directive).

What does this mean for the employer?

Employees with families have the right to request flexible working arrangements within the company to care of young children up to the age of twelve, or seriously ill family members. This is not about new schemes or leave but the possibility of adjusting the existing working arrangement by mutual agreement, where possible.

For these adjustments to the working arrangements the needs expressed by the workers should be taken into account. The employer, however, may take into account economic or organisational reasons to justify any postponement or refusal, or it may also propose an alternative solution.

There is a seniority condition of six months prior to written application.

The request for a flexible working arrangement is possible for a period of up to 12 months and relates to an adjustment of the employee's existing work pattern, in particular in the form of:

• remote working (e.g. teleworking no. 85 structural teleworking);

• an adjustment of the work schedule (e.g. flexible working hours);

• a reduction of working hours.

The possibility, with safeguards, of an early return from the flexible working arrangement to the original working arrangement.

Employees making use of this system are protected against any adverse treatment (indemnity of two to three months’ salary), therefore also protected from redundancy (indemnity of four to six months’ salary).


The new collective agreement came into force on 1 October 2022.

For more information, please contact the employment law team.