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Ukraine Implements Employment-Relations Optimisation

Following the beginning of a full-scale stage of a war of aggression launched by russia against Ukraine on 24 February 2022, the Ukrainian parliament has made significant efforts to rearrange and deregulate employment relations in order to make it possible for employers and employees to adjust to day-to-day realities in Ukraine.

One of the latest developments in this deregulation is the new Law of Ukraine On Optimisation of Employment Relations, which was recently passed by the Ukrainian parliament but has not yet been promulgated.

The key steps for optimisation of employment relations set down in the Law are as follows:

  • acknowledgment of employees with employment-related documents (e.g., orders, notices, etc.) may be conducted via any electronic means agreed between employer and employee;
  • introduction of additional grounds for employment termination due to the russian military aggression against Ukraine:
  • termination by an employer due to impossibility to provide an employee with work conditions as a result of destruction of the employer’s facilities necessary for employee’s work as a consequence of combat actions (a specific procedure must be followed by an employer for such termination);
  • termination by an employer of an employee being absent from the workplace for more than four months without any information on the reasons for this absence.

Additionally, the Law elaborates on the mechanism for suspending employment agreements, which now:

  • may be initiated both by an employer and an employee in cases when both of them cannot perform their employment-related obligations due to military aggression of russia against Ukraine;
  • can be agreed upon for a period no longer than the duration of martial law;
  • should be formalised by an employment order with specific mandatory details;
  • can be challenged through a special procedure in the State Labour Service of Ukraine.

Furthermore, the Law sets down that all employment-related monetary losses of both employers and employees shall be compensated, inter alia, at the expense of russia as the aggressor state. The respective procedure for this must be elaborated by the Ukrainian government at a later stage.

Another important point: the Law allows responsible public authorities to conduct unscheduled checks to ensure that employers comply with employment law rules.

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