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Seven key legal and health points that companies must take into account when returning to work

| News | Employment Law and Social Security

Alfredo Aspra, Rocío Vivo and José María Gallego explain the keys to recovering activity at work after the declaration of the state of alert

Companies are beginning to recover from the standstill caused by the coronavirus pandemic and the declaration of the state of alert. During the de-escalation phase, Andersen Tax & Legal explains the keys to making this return to work easier to Confilegal.

  • Defining the legal aspects of returning to work

Alfredo Aspra, Partner in the Employment Practise Area of Andersen Tax & Legal, believes that "beyond the specific regulations that may affect each sector of activity in different ways, the priority and key lies in the prevention of occupational risks and the adoption of measures that allow for the protection of the safety and health of workers.

In this scenario, this jurist points out measures such as "maintaining safety distances, disinfecting spaces, using masks and disinfectant gels or, as far as possible, giving priority to teleworking or other measures that would be adopted in companies, such as limiting seating, staggered or shift work or the preparation and monitoring of specific safety and health protocols".

  • Managing the situation of furloughed workers

As for the furloughed workers, Alfredo Aspra and the senior associate of the Andersen Tax & Legal Employment Practise, Rocío Vivo, point out that "they will keep their contract suspended, as long as the causes justifying it (force majeure, economic, technical, organizational or productive causes) last".

"Thus, once these are over, and the employee is disaffected from the temporary lay-off, the worker must be able to return to his job in adequate conditions," they clarify. Regarding reductions in working hours, "during the time the employee is providing services, the employer must guarantee that the work is done with the maximum guarantees of safety and health".

  • Return to the office or continue teleworking

Regarding the return of workers to the office, José María Gallego, Andersen Tax & Legal lawyer and specialist in occupational risk prevention, and Rocío Vivo remind us that the current regulations SND/399/2020 and SND/414/2020 continue to promote teleworking, whenever possible, for those workers who can carry out their work at a distance.

For these experts, "safeguarding this general principle, the organization of the return to the centre must be in line with the contingency plan designed by the Prevention Service and implemented by the company, which will take into account the measures arising from the updating of the risk assessment".

They also point out that some of the measures being adopted by companies in our country to organise this return are the return of workers organised by risk groups, alternating between on-site work and remote work or the closure of common areas.

Other proposals include "increasing the distance between work teams, staggered schedules (alternate days or weeks per team) to avoid crowding at the entrance and exit of the work centre and guarantees of reconciliation for workers with older or younger dependents.

You can see the article at Confilegal.

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