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13 April 2018

Romania: law on teleworking approved

The parliament adopted on 1 March 2018 a draft bill that regulates telework. Law no. 81/2018 on telework activity allows employees to work from home, offering more flexibility to both employees and employers. The initiative refers to provisions of the European Framework Agreement on Telework (2002).

Romania’s parliament has adopted a draft bill that regulates telework. The bill will allow workers who work on a computer to do so from home, offering more flexibility to both workers and employers. Law no. 81/2018 on the regulation of telework activity was published on 2 April 2018 in the Official Gazette no. 296 and took effect on 5 April 2018. Telework is defined (in accordance with the European Framework Agreement on Telework - 2002) as a form of organising work, using information and communication technology, by which the employee – voluntary and on a regular basis – carries out their work away from their employer’s premises at least one day per month.

The legislative act was initiated by the government in the summer of 2017. According to the bill, workers who work from home will have the same rights as regular employees, for instance in the field of occupational safety and health. Overtime is not allowed and working hours and the employer’s methods of control over their work shall be agreed and provided in (a) the individual employment agreement, (b) the employee handbook, and (c) the applicable collective bargaining agreement. The bill provides the labour inspectorate with the competence to carry out controls at workplaces in workers’ residences in order to check if labour legislation is respected and the work environment meets the occupational safety and health requirements. The sanctioning regime regulates various administrative fines for a breach of the employer’s obligations regarding teleworkers. Interestingly, workers’ representatives have access to the telework place for verifying the work conditions of teleworkers.

Teleworking will be regulated by an individual, full-time employment contract or by an additional act, but the employer will be the one who has to approve the workplace. The bill also defines certain conditions: for instance, employees need to work at least once a week remotely. If people work from home, employers will be able to have access there only if they previously notify the employees. The employer is responsible for ensuring the appropriate software, data protection, training, and for offsetting the communication and technical support costs. The employee will be responsible for damages brought to the work equipment and all other goods received from the employer to perform the telework. The new type of contract will also include the employer’s obligation to ensure the transport to and from the place of the teleworking activity.


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