"A new year has begun and key performance indicators for variable remuneration are to be assessed."
Self-employed workers and protection against discrimination
The rules on workplace and employment equality covered in EU Directive 2000/78 are not limited to employees but also cover all self-employed workers. Any national legislation that does not punish the refusal to execute or renew a self-employment contract due to the individual’s sexual orientation is contrary to EU legislation. Self-employed workers must be guaranteed the same protections that EU legislation provides for subordinate employees.
EU Court of Justice 12/01/2023 (Case C-356/21)
Individual rights regarding sharing personal data
Where personal data is intended to be disclosed to third party recipients, the data controller (i.e. the person who transmits the personal data of third parties) is obliged to inform the data subject (i.e. the person whose data is being transmitted to third parties) and must, if requested, inform the data subject of the exact identity of the third party recipients rather than simply indicate what category of recipient they are (publishing or IT companies, ONG, mail order advertisers, etc.). Only in cases where it is not yet possible to identify the recipients individually can the data controller only provide the category of the third party. The subject’s right to access the identities of recipients of their personal data is necessary in order to comply with EU legislation on the processing of personal data (GDPR), including the rights of rectification, to object to processing and to deletion.
EU Court of Justice 12/01/2023 (Case C-154/21)
Fuel Bonus extended
The Fuel Bonus has been extended into 2023, allowing employees to access tax-free fuel vouchers of up to €200. The Tax Authority (14/07/2022 No 27/E) recently confirmed that the fuel bonus also covers vouchers to recharge electric vehicles. Only subordinate employees are entitled to the fuel bonus. The relevant cost of the fuel bonus is entirely deductible from corporate income.
Decree Law 14/01/2023, no. 5
Joint liability for contracted employees’ accidents at work
If a contract worker suffers an accident on site whilst working, both the contractor and the employer are jointly liable except in cases where the accident was linked to specific risks directly relating to the contractors’ work. The employer can be held jointly liable either as the person responsible for selecting the contractor or for failing to apply the appropriate safety measures. As employers are responsible for the working environment on their premises, they must ensure all measures to safeguard the health and safety of all employees – including contract workers – are applied.
Supreme Court 10/01/2023 No. 375
INPS updates on use of social safety nets
The INPS has published a new circular to summarise the provisions according to which social safety nets and household income support measures are available. This notably includes paid parental leave, where the regulations have been renewed so that one of three months’ paid leave which is non-transferrable to the other parent is indemnified at 80%, instead of the usual 30%. Another measure covered by the circular is the special salary support scheme (“CIGS”) for employees affected by business reorganisations or redundancies. The CIGS covers a maximum period of twelve months and can be accessed only by companies with 15+ employees.
INPS, Circular 16/01/2023 n. 4
INPS update on statutory interest rate
Starting from 1 January 2023, the statutory interest rate has been increased to 5% per year. This change affects the calculation of the extra sum owed by employers in the event of omitted or late payment of social security and welfare contributions. The INPS has specified that new measures will be applied with reference to contributions due as of the new year, whilst for debt outstanding prior to this year, calculations will be made on the basis of the legal interest rate in force at the relevant starting date. Finally, the INPS specifies that the 5% rate applies to retirement pension benefits and end-of-service and termination benefits payable from 1 January 2023.
INPS, Circular 04/01/2023 No. 2
Trade union agreements cannot be enforced against INPS if employment relationship remains
A recent case before the Supreme Court highlighted that a trade union agreement reached within the framework of the business transfer procedure pursuant to Article 47, Law no. 428/1990, in which it was provided that the transferor company took over deferred compensation accrued (so called “Trattamento di Fine Rapporto”, or “TFR”) by the employees up to the date of the transfer of the branch, could not be enforced against INPS. If, therefore, a transferor company is bankrupt and its employees have been admitted to the bankruptcy liabilities for the amount of the TFR accrued by them prior to the transfer of the business, the INPS, through its “Fondo di Tesoreria” fund, is not obliged to pay the relevant amount to employees, given the insolvency of the bankrupt transferor company. The INPS successfully argued that that payment from the Fondo di Tesoreria presupposes that an employment relationship had ended and, therefore, refused to pay.
Supreme Court 27/12/2022 no. 37789
Crimes committed prior to employment relationship justify dismissal
Disciplinary dismissal for crimes committed before the start of an employee’s employment relationship is lawful if the seriousness of the conduct irreparably damages the bond of trust. On that basis, the Supreme Court upheld the dismissal of an employee who had committed unlawful acts at his previous job.
Supreme Court 13/12/2022 no. 36461
Air Transport Solidarity Fund and training funding
The Solidarity Fund for Air Transport Employees finances training schemes to enhance professional skills and update licenses required by employees. Training activities for the professional retraining of air transport employees following a company restructuring or reorganisation are also financed. The INPS provides operational clarification for funding, including the management of applications to access funding for training plans to benefit employees who are recipients of the NASPI unemployment benefit who have directly incurred the cost of training for the renewal of licenses, qualifications and patents.
INPS, Circular 28/12/2022 no. 138