Q & A Employment Law - European Football Championship | Violation of the mask obligation in the workplace
21/06/2021

Q: Jos, your employee, gets too excited about a Kevin De Bruyne goal and drops his mask. Other workers complain and, unfortunately, Jos also turned out to be infected. Does his reckless behaviour constitute a serious cause?

A: Case law has already ruled that refusing to wear a mask can be considered a serious cause. If Jos throws away his mask, for whatever reason, he can be dismissed without notice period or severance pay. In assessing the serious cause, the Antwerp Labour Court took into account the nature of the company (a food processing company), the work regulations (which contained clear provisions concerning non-compliance with health and safety measures) and the status of the employee (candidate for the Committee of Prevention and Protection at Work as an employee representative).

Attention: if such a situation occurs, the employer must ensure that the 3-day time limit is respected: the dismissal must take place within 3 days after (notice of) the facts. Furthermore, it is important to have sufficient evidence (e.g. witness testimonies) to prove that the obligation to wear a mask was not respected.

If, as an employer, you are confronted with such facts and your employee, in his enthusiasm for football or in any other context, does not take into account the COVID-19 measures, do not hesitate to contact one of our colleagues of the Employment & Benefits team and we will be happy to assist!

Related : Loyens & Loeff CVBA

[+ http://www.loyensloeff.com]


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