STATE ACTION ON CORONAVIRUS
On March 11, 2020 the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine adopted Resolution On Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in Ukraine No.211, according to which the quarantine has been introduced throughout Ukraine from March 12 to April 3, 2020. As of today the Ministry of Health of Ukraine admits the lockdown may be extended.
From March 16 to April 3, 2020 all foreigners and people without citizenship will be prohibited from entering the country. Depending on further developments with the pandemic, the restrictive measure may be lifted or extended. Ukraine also halts all regular passenger services including flights, trains and buses to and from Ukraine.
On March 17, 2020 the Law of Ukraine On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine Aimed to Prevent the Occurrence and Spread of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) (No. 530-ІХ) (the Law) was brought into force.
COVID-19 OUTBREAK = UNPAID LEAVE?
Please note that the Law amends the Labor Code of Ukraine and excludes the term of unpaid leave due to quarantine from the general allowed term of such leave (15 days a year). However, remember that unpaid leave is possible at the employee's will only and therefore without the employee’s application it is impossible to place on such leave. Forcing to such leave may cost the employer up to UAH 51 thousand fine for each case.
In the absence of the employee's consent to an unpaid leave due to quarantine and the impossibility to work remotely, the idle time will not be the employee's fault. For the idle time period the employee retains his/her salary (2/3 of the average salary or the average salary - depending on conditions specified in the Labor Code of Ukraine).
The Law gave employers the right to change working arrangements, including the servicing of individuals and legal entities.
Thus, to protect workers from the risk of virus infection it is allowed to limit working hours subject to the quarantine requirements. However, the employer may reduce the amount of salary, put on part-time, change other essential working conditions only by giving two months prior notice of the changes. Considering the sudden introduction of quarantine, it is impossible to comply with these requirements and to change such working conditions legally.
In addition to the above, it is possible for the employee to do his/her work at home during the quarantine period (in the absence of the employee's will to go on leave). There are no legislative restrictions on such working arrangements, thereby allowing the employer and the employee to determine it individually, depending on specifics of the work.
MAKING OF CHANGES
Changes in working arrangements and the remote work introduction shall be made by an appropriate instruction (order) of the employer. Employees shall be informed of the adopted document. If possible, the document (or the sheet attached to it) shall bear an appropriate inscription of review. Means of communication (email, telephone, messenger, etc.) shall be used if the employee cannot review such document personally. At the same time, employee’s confirmation of consent and willingness to work with such changes shall be obtained. It is better to make such an agreement in writing. If it is impossible to obtain a paper document from an employee, one shall use communication means, obtain a scanned copy or a photocopy of the document. The employee will be able to submit the original document upon return to work after quarantine cancellation or to send by post to the employer.
MORATORIUM ON SCHEDULED INSPECTION
The Law for the period of quarantine (restrictive measures) prohibits any scheduled measures of state supervision (control) in the field of economic activity. All initiated measures shall be suspended for this period and cannot be continued. At the same time, unscheduled measures related to violation of labor law during the quarantine period may be carried out, and liable persons on the basis of such measures may be held responsible.
Please kindly note KPD Consulting Law Firm commits to providing full and continuous legal services adapted to the anti-COVID measures implemented in Ukraine. Our teams are well set up to work remotely, whilst being fully available via phone and email. For any further details, our clients may always get in touch with their relevant contact partner in our law firm. In case of any problems please contact our reception board +380442343619.
Should you have any questions with respect to above or require any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Kyrylo Kazak (firstname.lastname@example.org), or Mr. Andrii Petryshak (email@example.com). We will be pleased to assist You. The information contained in this overview is not intended to provide legal advice and should not be relied on or treated as a substitute for specific advice concerning individual situations.