New law on posting

The Chamber of Representatives recently adopted a new law concerning the posting of workers in Belgium. This law mainly amends the legislation concerning posting and temporary work.

The main changes are as follows:

  • Extended "hard core": as a reminder, an employer that posts its workers to Belgium is required to respect, for the work performed there, a "hard core" of minimum mandatory Belgian rules concerning working conditions (i.e. rules on working hours, pay conditions, public holidays, etc.). The new legislation specifies that this hard core will now include, subject to certain conditions, rules on the payment of allowances or reimbursement of expenses covering travel, accommodation and food expenses for workers who are away from home for professional reasons.
  • Posting for a period exceeding 12 months: when the effective duration of the posting exceeds 12 months, the employer posting its workers to Belgium will be required to respect, from the 13th month, all the legal and regulatory working and employment conditions in force in Belgium, except the rules relating to concluding and terminating employment contracts and the rules on complementary pensions. In other words, from the 13th month of posting, compliance with working conditions will no longer be limited to the "hard core". For example, from the 13th month, an employer will be obliged to comply with the rules on a guaranteed salary in the event of illness or accident of one of its workers posted to Belgium, whereas during the first 12 months the employer is not obliged to comply with these rules since the provisions on a guaranteed salary are not part of the hard core. It should also be noted that the employer may, via a reasoned notification to the authorities, temporarily derogate from this rule.
  • Obligation to provide information in the case of temporary agency work: new information obligations are imposed on companies established in Belgium using temporary agency workers posted from another state to Belgium. In this case, the Belgian user company will have to inform the foreign temporary employment agency, in writing or by electronic means, of the working and employment conditions applicable in its company (in particular, conditions relating to working hours, overtime and holidays). In addition, if the Belgian user company intends to use the temporary worker to carry out work in a Member State other than Belgium, the user company will have to tell the foreign temporary employment agency which Member State(s) (other than Belgium) the services will be provided in. Any breach of these information obligations could result in criminal sanctions.

The provisions of this law will enter into force on 30 July 2020, without retroactive effect.

Gaël Chuffart, Partner, Brussels

Sophie Berg, Partner, Brussels

Yousra El Alaoui, Junior Associate, Brussels