"Corona" Amendment to the Slovak Labour Code and governmental measures aimed at helping employers

06 April 2020 | slovakia newsletters

In response to the coronavirus crisis, which is seriously impacting the Slovak economy and employment, the Government of Slovakia has proposed an amendment to the Slovak Labour Code which was quickly passed in Parliament. The government also introduced aid measures to help employers overcome the negative impacts of the crisis. Information on both of these topics is below. Should you wish to obtain more detailed information please do not hesitate to contact us.

Amendment to the Slovak labour code

The Amendment came into effect on 4 April 2020 and modifies certain provisions of Act No. 311/2001 Coll., Labour Code, as amended. These modifications are only applicable during an extraordinary situation, state of distress or state of emergency declared by the competent authorities ("Emergency Situation") and for two months after its recall.

According to the Amendment, if the employee is not able to perform work fully or partly due to the suspension or limitation of the employer's operation based on the decision of the competent authority or as a result of a declared Emergency Situation (a state of emergency is currently declared for the whole territory of the Slovak Republic), this constitutes an obstacle to work on the part of the employer. During such an obstacle, employees are entitled to wage compensation amounting to 80 % of their average earnings (but not less than the statutory minimum salary).

The Amendment also introduces the entitlement of the employer to order an employee to work from home if the nature of the work allows. Likewise, the employee is entitled to work from home if the nature of the work allows and there are no substantive operational reasons that would prevent home office. These entitlements are only applicable while measures to prevent the emergence and spread of transmittable diseases or imposed by the relevant authorities when public health is endangered are in place. Currently such measures are in place in Slovakia.  

In addition, the Amendment shortens the minimum period for the employer to communicate a request to the employee to take vacation leave from 14 to seven days, unless the employee agrees to a shorter period. Also, the minimum period in which the employer is obliged to inform the employee about the distribution of their working time is reduced from a week to two days in advance.

Under the Amendment, the employer must excuse the employee's absence from work during obligatory quarantine or isolation. During this time the employee is not entitled to wage compensation payable by the employer, but to a sickness benefit from the Social Insurance Agency. The same applies to employees providing full-time care of a family member or a child under social security regulations. 

The Parliament has also passed an amendment to Act No. 124/2006 Coll., on Occupational Health and Safety, as amended, under which the employer is not obliged to fulfil some of its duties during the current Emergency Situation if these duties cannot be objectively fulfilled. Such nonfulfillment must not imminently and gravely endanger health or life. Furthermore, the fulfilment of certain statutory periods is postponed.

Government aid

To avert mass redundancies, the Slovak government has introduced an allowance scheme aimed at two types of employers: (i) employers whose operations were prohibited or closed during the Emergency Situation based on measures issued by the Public Health Authority of the Slovak Republic; and (ii) employers whose revenues (in Slovak: tržba) decreased during the Emergency Situation. To be eligible for the allowance, the employer must be unable to assign work to the employees (an obstacle on the part of the employer must be present).

Aid for employers whose operations were prohibited or closed

An employer who retains its employees during the Emergency Situation despite its operations being prohibited or closed based on a measure issued by the Public Health Authority of the Slovak Republic can claim an allowance to cover 80 % of the employee's average salary (max. EUR 1,100).

Aid for employers whose revenues have decreased

An employer who retains its employees during the Emergency Situation despite a decrease in its revenues compared to the same period in 2019 (or 2019 average) or in comparison with February 2020 (if the employer did not operate business in 2019), can claim an allowance to partially cover the employees' wages in the following amounts:

Revenues decrease

Allowance for March 2020

Allowance for April 2020 and subsequent months of Emergency Situation

20 % and more

 EUR 90

EUR 180

40 % and more

EUR 150

EUR 300

60 % and more

EUR 210

EUR 420

80 % and more

EUR 270

EUR 540


The maximum claimable allowance for one employer is EUR 200,000 per month.

Conditions for provision of government aid

For the employer to claim the aid, it has to pay wage compensation to the employee equalling 80 % of average earnings and commit itself not to terminate the respective employees due to the redundancy or dissolution of the employer for two months after the month for which the aid is claimed. The employer is also obliged to prove that certain other conditions are met and fulfil other obligations.

The government aid will be provided by the Labour Office of the Slovak Republic.

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Kindly note that the above information does not demonstrate the applicable legal framework in a conclusive manner. Also, some of the addressed topics might be subject to short-term changes. We therefore invite you to browse through the coronavirus designated section of our website www.schoenherr.eu for further information.

Peter Devínsky

Attorney at Law

T: +421 2 571 00738
p.devinsky@schoenherr.eu

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labour & employment

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