Littler Global Guide - Ireland - 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

High Court on Enforceability of Noncompete Restriction

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

Author: Emmet Whelan, Partner – ByrneWallace

The Irish High Court recently held that a covenant preventing a former senior executive of an airline from being “employed, engaged, concerned or interested in any capacity” with “any business wholly or partly in competition” with the employer was void and unenforceable as an unjustified restraint of trade.

When Can an Employer Use CCTV Footage for Workplace Investigations?

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

Author: Emmet Whelan, Partner – ByrneWallace

The Irish High Court has recently found fault with an employer for viewing CCTV footage for one purpose, but using it for a different purpose. The case underlines the need for employers to have data protection policies that are sufficiently broad to allow an employer to use workplace CCTV for legitimate purposes.

COVID-19: Latest Employment Law Developments

New Regulation or Official Guidance

Author: Emmet Whelan, Partner – ByrneWallace

On March 12, 2020, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Irish Government announced that schools, colleges and childcare facilities would close. Further restrictions were implemented in respect of public gatherings. Employers should assign the task of reviewing public health and government guidance to senior employees. Employers must also communicate information and instruction to employees, as it is a legal duty of the employer. The Government has advised that employees should remote work if possible. The Government has also introduced bills to provide support for those who have been affected by COVID-19, such as providing income support.

COVID-19: Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme

Proposed Bill or Initiative

Author: Emmet Whelan, Partner – ByrneWallace

The Irish Government has introduced a Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme under emergency legislation that will provide additional financial support for employers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The State will contribute up to €410 per week per employee to pay wages during the crisis.

COVID-19: Working from Home

Important Action by Regulatory Agency

Author: Emmet Whelan, Partner – ByrneWallace

The Health and Safety Authority and the Data Protection Commission in Ireland have both published guidance to assist employers and employees in relation to working from home as part of the national response to COVID-19. There is a duty that employers have to ensure the health safety, and welfare of all employees, when an employee must work from home. There is no duty to do an inspection of the employee’s home, but asking the employee to provide information about their workspace at home should suffice. For example, is there enough workspace to accommodate all work equipment? The employees’ responses should be recorded, and if an employee has needs, an employer must take immediate action and establish how the problem will be addressed. Specific risk assessment measures should be taken if an employee is pregnant, a night worker, a young worker under 18, or a worker with a disability.

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.