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Amendments to the Labour Code and Social Dialogue Law

By GEO no.42/2023 for the modification and completion of Law no. 367/2022 on social dialogue and Law no. 53/2003 (Labour Code), published in the Official Monitor no. 459 of 25 May 2023, a series of modifications and additions were made to these normative acts.

These new amendments harmonise the legislative framework for employment relations and make collective negotiation more flexible and encourage collective bargaining at sectoral level.

We will highlight the most notable changes in terms of the Labour Code:

The legislator expressly establishes that the period during which the employee is on carer’s leave is not included in the duration of annual leave and constitutes seniority in work and in the speciality.

An exception to the obligation to bargain collectively at unit level is also stipulated, specifically where the employer has fewer than 10 employees.

The Court of First Instance has jurisdiction to settle, at first instance, claims relating to individual labour disputes and collective labour disputes, and the judgment is subject only to appeal, with a time limit of 10 days from the date of notification of the judgment.

Among the important amendments to Law 367/2022 on social dialogue concerning collective bargaining at unit level are the following:

The time limit within which the employer is obliged to convene all the parties entitled to negotiate the collective labour agreement and to hold the first negotiation meeting, if a collective labour agreement is in force in the unit, has been changed from 5 days to 15 calendar days.

For the duration of the strike, the individual employment contract or employment relationship is no longer suspended by law, but only at the initiative of the employee, an amendment which links the provisions of the Social Dialogue Law with the provisions of the Labour Code.

Nullity affecting a collective labour contract can be established by the competent court only for the duration of the collective labour contract.

It is expressly specified that in a collective bargaining sector, an employer may be represented by only one employer/employers’ federation/employers’ confederation.

The obligation to convene and organise the first negotiating meeting, when the collective bargaining procedure is initiated, lies solely with the employer.

A final clarification is that the periods of appeal that have begun to run and have not expired on the date of entry into force of this emergency ordinance shall continue to run for 10 days after its publication in the Official Monitor of Romania.

The provisions of this Government Emergency Ordinance shall enter into force from the date of its publication in the Official Monitor of Romania, Part I, with the exception of the provisions of Article I, items 65-66, which shall enter into force 30 days after the date of its publication in the Official Monitor of Romania.

Alexandra Florescu – Attorney at law

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