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The possibility of the simplified application procedure for temporary unemployment due to corona is coming to an end

Publications | Employment Law Team

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Shortly after the outbreak of the corona virus, in March 2020, employers were offered the possibility to place employees on temporary unemployment because of force majeure (corona) with a simplified procedure.

It was decided that employers no longer needed to send notifications of temporary unemployment to the national employment office (RVA) and that it was sufficient for them to submit a social risk declaration at the end of the month stating the number of hours of temporary unemployment.

In principle, force majeure implies the complete impossibility to perform the employment contract. With this simplified procedure, it was possible for employees to continue working a number of days per week. Thus, the concept of force majeure was also temporarily interpreted in a slightly broader way.

As a result of the war in Ukraine, this possibility was extended if a situation of force majeure was the result of the conflict in Ukraine.

The simplified procedure was extended several times during the corona pandemic and even reintroduced, but it now seems to be coming to an end.

From 1 July 2022 onwards, the classic procedures for introducing temporary unemployment will apply again and the simplified procedure will no longer be available.

This means, among other things, that the normal formalities for introducing temporary unemployment for lack of work due to economic reasons (notification of the temporary unemployment to the national employment office, etc.) must be respected, and that for introducing temporary unemployment due to force majeure, the strict definition of force majeure must again be met (e.g. the complete impossibility to fulfil the employment contract).