Littler Global Guide - France - Q1 2020

Browse through brief employment and labor law updates from around the globe. Contact a Littler attorney for more information or view our global locations.

View all Q1 2020 Global Guide Quarterly updates   Download full Q1 2020 Global Guide Quarterly

Emergency Law in Response to COVID-19

New Legislation Enacted

Author: Guillaume Desmoulin, Partner - Littler France

On March 23, 2020, Title III was enacted as economic emergency measures to assist companies in the COVID-19 epidemic. This law contains several measures, such as facilitating implementation of part-time work and furlough; authorizing employers to require employees to take or modify their dates of paid leaves; allowing companies to derogate to public policy rules and CBA provisions related to working time, weekly rest and Sunday rest. It also allows modification of the following: dates and conditions of payment of “purchasing power” premiums; dates and conditions of payment of a profit sharing plan; and the means of information and consultation of staff representatives, so that it can deliver its opinion, and suspend the on-going professional elections. Several orders have already been published.

Partial Activity Scheme to Prevent Economic Dismissals

New Order or Decree

Author: Guillaume Desmoulin, Partner - Littler France

A partial activity scheme to prevent economic dismissals is available, so employers can suspend the work of their employees or reduce working time, while maintaining 70% of the salaries during a temporary period and being reimbursed by the State. To help companies facing COVID-19, the government simplified the existing scheme. As of March 1, 2020, companies can request the new scheme be used when: they have been required to close as a consequence of public decision; they are facing a decrease of business; or when it is impossible to implement the minimum health and safety measures. On March 25, 2020, the decree modified the calculation rules of the allowance and it provides more flexibility in the application process for employers. This new scheme will apply until December 30, 2020.

Judiciary Extension of Consultation Delays of Staff Representative Bodies

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

Author: Guillaume Desmoulin, Partner - Littler France

On February 20, 2020, the French Supreme Court ruled for the first time that when the claim from the works council is justified, then a judge can compel the employer to communicate additional information and extend the maximum consultation period or set a new final date of consultation after the additional information is delivered.

Burden of Proof Regarding Overtime

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

Author: Guillaume Desmoulin, Partner - Littler France

Until recently, for a litigation regarding the existence of and/or the number of overtime hours, the employee had to provide to the employment tribunal sufficient evidence to support their claim, especially evidence regarding the exact number of effective working hours. In compliance with the recent case law of the EU Court of Justice (May 14, 2019, n°C-55/18) compelling employers to implement reliable tools for recording work time, the French Supreme Court detailed the rules regarding the burden of proof regarding overtime. Employees are expected to communicate evidence supporting their overtime claims. However, the French Supreme Court ruled that the employment tribunal shall also make their decision by analyzing the evidence provided by the employer. In other words, the courts shall not only consider the evidence or calculations from the employee before assessing the existence and the amount of overtime.

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.