March 2018 - Luxembourg Employment News

Overview of new reforms in employment

At the end of 2017, several new reforms were implemented in order to modify or to clarify the applicable law.

Here are the most significant changes:

Immigration

Visa for “investor”

The Grand-Ducal Regulation dated 5 December 2017 coordinating the amended Law of 15 August 1915 on commercial companies has defined the areas of business for which investors may apply for a specific visa, in accordance with art. 53 of the Law of 29 August 2008 upon freedom of movement and immigration as amended. From now on, investments in the following sectors are eligible for “investor” visa: 

  • information and communication technologies;
  • space technologies;
  • environmental technologies;
  • intelligent mobility technologies;
  • health technologies;
  • logistics, excluding simple road transport without any other activities which create economic added value;
  • the industrial sector - provided that production or research and development will be located in Luxembourg;
  • the tourism sector - for regional or national tourism infrastructure projects as well as hotel projects of more than 25 guest rooms;
  • commercial activities related to the creation, extension, takeover, transfer or change of one or more main commercial branches of a commercial surface whose sales area is equal to or greater than 400 m².

The Grand-Ducal Regulation has entered into force as of 25 December 2017.

Minimum wage for highly qualified employees

The Ministerial Regulation of 30 November 2017 implementing the Law of 29 August 2008 on freedom of movement and immigration, as amended set the minimum wage for an average highly qualified worker at:

  • EUR 73,992 for the employee holding a “highly qualified employees” visa;
  • EUR 59,198.40 for occupations belonging to ISCO1 groups 1 and 2.

The new minimum wage has entered into force on December 11, 2017.

Leaves

The Law of 15 December 20172 upon leaves amended the provisions of the Labour Code related to leaves as follows:

 Leave   Number of days
Death of the employee's or his/her spouse's/partner's second-degree relative  2 days
Marriage of a child 1 day for each parent

Move
2 days3
Marriage of the employee 3 days
Declaration of partnership of the employee 1 day
Adoption of a child under 16 years old (except if the employee benefits from adoption leave) 10 days
Paternity leave 10 days
Postnatal leave  12 weeks for the mother

Adoption leave
12 weeks
Death of an underage child 5 days
 
Leave for family reasons (in case of illness or accident)4
  • 12 days for a child aged below 5;
  • 18 days for a child aged between 5 to 13;
  • 5 days for a child aged between 13 to 185.

Hence, the following provisions were dismissed:

Leave  Number of days
Pre-enrolment leave for military service 1 day
Declaration of partnership of a child 2 days for each parent

 

Paternity leave and adoption leave for a child of less than 16 years of age may be split. In order to be enforceable, the employee must notify the employer of his intention to take such leave two months prior to the contemplated date of the leaves. Otherwise the duration is reduced to two days.

The new leave rules came into force on 1 January 2018.

Financial assistance in hiring

The maximum number of integration jobs eligible for financial assistance from the State6 has been set at 400 for the year 2018.

In addition, the Grand-Ducal Regulation of 15 December 2017 implementing the provisions related to integration jobs specified the terms and conditions for granting financial assistance for hiring: 

  • The employer's request must be motivated by the employer and sent to the “Agence pour le Développement de l'Emploi” ("ADE"). The decision is made by the Minister having Employment in his or her attributions, after consulting with the ADE.
  • The financial assistance is granted by quarterly reimbursements, based on a declaration by the employer to the ADE, to which is enclosed (i) copies of salary slips and (ii) a certificate of affiliation of the employee to the social security system.

The new terms and conditions for granting financial assistance have been in force since 22 December 2017.

Constituting meeting of the staff delegates

Announced since the Law of 23 July 2015 and expected for the next elections scheduled for late 2018, early 2019, the Grand-Ducal Regulation of 15 December 2017 implementing Article L. 416-1 of the Labour Code has specified the mandatory items to be included in the agenda of the constituent meeting of staff delegates. The following topics must be discussed on the agenda: 

  • The appointment of a polling station comprising at least two members and at least one member from each union represented in the staff delegation;  
  • Election of the President;  
  • Election of the Vice-President;  
  • Election of the secretary;  
  • Election of officers;  
  • Election of the Equality Delegate;  
  • The election of the Health and Safety Officer; and
  • The time credits granted to staff representatives, as provided for in Article L. 415-5 of the Labour Code.

The Regulation also specifies that a summary minute of the agenda must be sent to (i) the manager and (ii) the Labour and Mines Inspectorate within five days of the date of the meeting.

These provisions entered into force on 22 December 2017.

Other measures


Discrimination

The Law of 7 November 20177 on freedom of movement and protection against discrimination introduced new provisions to prohibit discriminatory behaviour towards persons on the basis of their nationality. These new provisions have been in force since 1 January 2018.

Staff representative experts

The Grand-Ducal Regulation of 15 December 2017 implementing Article L. 412-2 of the Labour Code limited the amount of the financial contribution in the event of an expert referred to in Article L. 412-2 of the Labour Code8 to 0.1% of total payroll. The Regulations came into force on 22 December 2017.

1 According to the 2008 International Standard Classification of Professions ("ISCO"), Group is composed of Directors, Executives and Managers while Group 2 gather Intellectual and Scientific Professions. 

2 Legislative record n°7060 

3 Over a period of three years of employment with the same employer, excluding professional relocation

4 Family reason leave taken before January 1,2018 is deducted from the maximum number of family leave days.

5 In case of hospitalisation

6 As a reminder, the financial assistance corresponds:

  • reimbursement of (i) 100% of salary costs actually incurred during the first twelve months; (ii) 80% of salary costs capped in the second year and (iii) 60% of salary costs capped in the third year; or
  • for jobseekers aged 50 years, reimbursement of 100% of salary costs until the day on which an old-age pension is paid to the employee.

Salary costs incurred are capped at 150% of the minimum social wage for unskilled employees.

7 Legislative record n°7102 

8 Under Article L. 412-2 of the Labour Code, an expert may be appointed "for the examination of specific questions" at meetings of employee representatives.