In Portugal, a new law has been passed that prohibits employers from contacting employees after working hours. The law is part of a series of new laws on telecommuting.
For example, companies must provide home workers with the right material, and they will have to pay for the extra costs that working from home entails.
To ensure that employees still have enough time for rest and family, employers should leave their staff at ease outside of official working hours. After all, according to the Portuguese government, they must respect the privacy of their employees. Employers who contact us in one way or another are violating the new law and could be penalized for doing so.
The law is part of a series of new labour laws surrounding telecommuting. Moreover, since the start of the pandemic, more and more Portuguese people have been working from home. The socialist government, therefore, felt that the time had come to amend the labour legislation in this regard.
The new laws give the Portuguese more rights to work from home if the nature of the job allows it. However, employers must provide employees with the proper equipment so that they can perform their duties properly. In addition, from now on, the employer pays the extra internet and electricity costs that employees incur by working from home.
To ensure that the staff does not become too isolated, employers should organize return moments every two months. Companies that do not respect the new rules will be fined, and the government made it clear.
In Belgium, but also in France, Italy, and Spain, employees cannot be continuously available. However, if an employer makes contact after hours, he cannot be penalized for doing so.