3.1 Early retirement part-time
- Early retirement part-time employees are allowed to continue the subsidized originally agreed part-time work if their employment relationship was discontinued during the COVID-19-crisis but restarted no later than 30/09.
3.2 Corona-short-time work
- In case of economic difficulties related to COVID-19, short-time work subsidies can be applied for at the Labour Market Authority ("Arbeitsmarktservice"- AMS);
- Reduction of average working time down to 10% during short-time work (up to 6 months). Reduction to 0 hours possible for a certain time as long average of 10% is met;
- Short-time work subsidy of up to 80-90 % of the employee's net remuneration (the subsidy is capped at EUR 5,370 gross);
- Short-time work subsidy also includes the employer's social security contributions;
- Ban on termination of employment contracts during short-time work + one month afterwards (exemptions apply).
3.3 Special care time
- If schools or kindergartens are closed due to authority measures, the employer may grant special care time to its employees. Special care time is limited to those employees (i) who are not necessary for the continuity of business operations, (ii) who have no further entitlement for absence of work due to child care and (iii) who have to take care of their children below age 14.
- Special care time also applies to those employees that have to take care of either (i) disabled persons if facilities for disabled persons are also closed due to authority measures, or (ii) other persons in need of care or personal assistance if their care/assistance is no longer guaranteed due to Covid-19.
- Special care time can be granted up to three weeks from the beginning of the official closure of schools/kindergartens/disabled persons facilities. The employer is entitled to compensation by the Austrian government of 1/3 of the remuneration paid to employees during special care time.
- Deadline for application: The claim for compensation must be submitted to the federal accounting agency within six weeks from the day the authority measures (closure of schools/kindergartens) are lifted.
3.4 Works councils & shop agreements
- Extension of mandate for works councils that would lapse between 16/03 and 31/10 until election of a new works council after 31/10.
- Shop agreements for corona-short-time-work can stipulate regulations for consumption of holiday entitlements or time-credits.
- Suspension of deadline for the challenge of ordinary terminations or dismissals until 30/04.
3.5 Employment Contracts
- Stipulation that governmental measures are not a force majeure with regards to employment relationships.
- If the employer is affected by governmental orders related to the COVID-19 crisis, the employer may request employees to consummate holiday entitlements or time-credits.
- Suspension of deadlines for the enforcement of entitlements until 30/04.
3.6 Work accidents
- Accidents occurring while working from home (home office) are considered as work accidents.
3.7 Release from work duty with continued payment
- Employees considered at high risk as regards Covid-19 are entitled to be relieved from the obligation to perform work with continued payment.
- Procedure: High-risk employees are individually informed by the Austrian Public Health Insurance Institution. In this case and after an individual risk assessment, the physician may issue a respective certificate to the employee. Alternatively, physicians may issue a respective certificate to the employee without the prior information of the Austrian Public Health Insurance Institution if the criteria of a high-risk employee are met.
- There is no entitlement to release from work duty if either (i) the employee may work from home (home office) or (ii) contagion of Covid-19 may be excluded with the highest certainty due to appropriate measures at the workplace.
- The termination of employment due to the release from work duty may be challenged in court.
- The employer is entitled to compensation by the Austrian government for the remuneration paid to employees, respective tax contributions and social insurance contributions during the release from work duty.
- Deadline for application: The claim for compensation must be submitted to the Public Health Insurance Institution within six weeks after the end of the release from work duty.
3.8 Tax-benefits for allowances and bonuses
- Allowances and bonuses additionally and exclusively paid due to the Covid-19 crisis are tax free up to EUR 3,000.
- 3.9 Construction workers
- Certain surcharges for employers do not apply during 16/03 until 15/5.
- Agreement between labor organizations and employer representatives of construction industry upon measures for workers' health protection on building sites