Are you being temporary laid off? This is what you need to know

Many companies are now concerned about the consequences of the coronavirus epidemic and the drop in the oil price. One option when activity levels are reduced or cease completely is to temporarily lay off personnel. This is what Tekna members need to know about temporary lay-offs.

Kvinne står foran skrivepult
Ready for your call: Anne Cathrine Hunstad, who heads Tekna's legal department, is ready to respond to inquiries from members who are concerned about temporary layo-ffs due to the Korona virus. Foto: Mikkel Moe

The coronavirus is now making major inroads into Norwegian working life. In order to help companies and employees through this crisis the Storting has now agreed unanimously on new rules on laying off employees.

On Monday 16 March, the Storting agreed on pay at the start of the temporary lay-off period, new rules on the employer’s period (the initial period of the temporary lay-off during which the employer must continue to pay the employee’s salary) and the removal of the waiting period. At the same time, the requirements relating to the reduction in working hours required in order to qualify for unemployment benefit during a temporary lay-off was reduced from 50 per cent to 40 per cent. The notice period for temporary lay-offs is normally 14 days. In exceptional circumstances this may be reduced to 2 days, under the General Agreement. The coronavirus outbreak may well be such a situation, although this will need to be discussed with union representatives.

“There is a pressing need for immediate measures. Nevertheless, it is still important for the reason underlying a temporary lay-off to be stated clearly. It is essential that union representatives discuss the grounds for temporary lay-off with the employer,” says attorney at law and head of Tekna’s legal office, Anne Cathrine Hunstad.

If you are temporary laid off, you will recive full pay from your employer for the first two days of the lay-off periode. For the next 18 days NAV will cover pay of up to six times the basic National Insurance amount, 6G. This is equivalent to approximately kr 600,000.

Beyond this, NAV will compensate loss of salary of up to 62.4 per cent of gross income up to six times the basic National Insurance amount. 

“It is vital that measures are put in place to help companies to get through this difficult situation. However, it is also important to look at how badly employees are affected by the situation,” says Hunstad.

Legal Assistance for members

If you have any questions about the coronavirus as it relates to your employment situation contact Tekna’s help desk

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Corona information page

Published: Thursday, March 19, 2020