EMPLOYMENT LAW

Whether you are employed as an employee or you employ employees yourself, employment law is a branch of law that you cannot avoid. Our firm has specialised knowledge of employment law and can assist you as an employer or employee in all its aspects. Employment law is constantly evolving, with continuous new regulations, new exceptions, exceptions to the exceptions, complete abolition of the rule and therefore the introduction of a new rule with new exceptions every now and then. Sounds complicated? It is, but that is where the challenge starts for us!

Employment contract tailored to your needs: clear agreements ensure a good working relationship

Among other things, we can assist you in drawing up your employment regulations or car policy. Of course, negotiating, drawing up or amending employment contracts is also part of our daily practice. Although drawing up an employment contract seems simple at first sight (you only must describe the job, fill in the salary and determine the starting date?), there is a lot more to a tailor-made employment contract, such as:

1. Do you immediately give an open-ended contract or do you start with a fixed-term contract or do you even try to work via an interim agency?

2. Will you employ an ‘ordinary’ employee or does the employee rather perform the tasks of a commercial representative? Is (s)he then entitled to a goodwill indemnity upon termination of the employment contract?

3. Will your employee work full-time or only part-time? If (s)he works part-time, do you consider the additional obligations, as described in our publication De nieuwe regels aangaande deeltijds werk: is uw arbeidsreglement aangepast?

4. Is it useful to include a non-competition clause in the employment contract? It is often reassuring for employers that their employees cannot immediately start working for a competitor after their employment. But do you also know that you have to pay compensation to the employee?

5. If your employee makes a discovery during the employment, who is entitled to the intellectual property thereof? This is an important question if your employee e.g. develops software.

On our website you will find a model of an employment contract that already gives you a good idea of what a good employment contract can look like. However, as shown above, this model needs to be further discussed and supplemented on the basis of the concrete wishes of both the employer and the employee.

During the employment: optimisations but also absences

In the course of the employment relationship, the question is often asked whether the wage can be further optimised. This is often possible, e.g. by granting extra-legal benefits, such as meal vouchers, a mobile phone or even a company car or bicycle.

Such wage optimisation often results in a win-win situation for both employee and employer. It is also possible that your employee will have to work temporarily at another location for a project, perhaps even abroad. Clear agreements need to be made about this. It is less fun if your employee is absent for a while. There can be various reasons for this absence, such as parental leave, but also illness or even an accident at work. Employers often lose perspective, that is when we are ready to guide.

Termination of the employment relationship: rarely fun, often discussions

One day, the employment relationship will come to an end. If retirement is the reason for this, it is often time for a celebration. However, the employee usually resigns or is fired, perhaps even for urgent reasons. In those cases, the party mood is usually far gone and tough decisions must be made. In the context of the termination of the employment relationship, we can advise you on the various dismissal procedures: termination with notice or immediate dismissal with payment of a dismissal fee, dismissal for misconduct, termination with mutual consent and a settlement agreement, etc. Which route is chosen depends on the specific circumstances of the case. Although the number of legal proceedings has fortunately dropped considerably as a result of the reform of the dismissal law in 2014, some proceedings (often in connection with dismissal for misconduct) still end in court. In that case, we can of course represent you in court.

Restructuring: a clear plan of action is crucial

If you have to carry out several redundancies at the same time (e.g. collective dismissal), you can depend on us to guide the restructuring in the right direction and to enter into consultation with the social partners. After all, these are often complex arrangements, in which many different rules must be observed. A small mistake or negligence can quickly lead to major negative consequences.

Euregional or international employer? Of course, with your employees as an asset!

In addition to providing general advice on labour law, we must admit that our employment specialists love the challenges of cross-border employment. After all, cross-border employment brings with its specific questions about applicable employment law, the competent country for social security contributions, tax jurisdiction, etc. Employees are often sent abroad by their (Belgian) employer for a certain assignment, a so-called secondment. In principle, the conditions of the original employment contract continue to apply, but there are also many rules of the host country that have to be considered. As you can read in our publication Detachering in de Duitse bouwsector: quo vadis? there are many good reasons for cross-border secondment. In terms of cross-border employment and secondment, our passion is to keep a close eye on the new rules.

Our specialists in employment law

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LABOR CONTRACT

EMPLOYMENT LAW | Peeters Euregio Law