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Frequently asked questions. Does the employer have an obligation to pay the employee during the enforced idleness in the state of emergency?

March 26, 2020

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Answer 

 

✅What regulations does the RA Labor Code have? 

 

According to Article 107 of the RA Labor Code, in the situation when the employer fails to provide the employee with the job envisaged by the employment contract, the employee may be transferred, upon his/her consent, to another job appropriate for him/her.

 

According to Article 186 (1), in the same situation, if the employee is not offered another job, the employee shall be paid two-thirds of his or her average hourly salary prior to idleness for every hour of idleness.

 

According to Article 186 of the RA Labor Code, ‘’The employee shall not be paid for idleness for reasons considered as force majeure in the manner prescribed by the legislation of the Republic of Armenia, as well as for idleness due to the fault of the employee’’. 

 

✅What problem arises?

 

The RA Labor Code does not envisage regulations for specific cases generated by a state of emergency, and as a result, employees are guided by Article 186 (1) of the RA Labor Code and require the remuneration envisaged for idleness, while some employers are guided by Article 186 (6) provisions and do not pay the employees. 

 

✅What solution does the Government offer?

 

In order to avoid different approaches in the current situation and to effectively protect the labor rights of employees, the Government of the Republic of Armenia is implementing a legislative initiative on special cases created in the state of emergency. 

 

In particular, it is envisaged that in special cases caused by the state of emergency, if the employer can not keep the job continued, including in a remote mode, the employee shall be paid for each hour that he/she has not worked at least at the minimum hourly rate set by legislation. Salaries of organizations funded by state and community budgets, as well as salaries of RA Central Bank employees are fully maintained. 

 

Employees working remotely are not considered to be in idleness and their salaries are fully paid. 

 

✅Once adopted, who will the law apply to?

 

The regulations will apply to employees and employers since March 16, 2020, when the state of emergency was declared. 

 

What will happen if the employee fails to pay the salary or pays the salary by violations of the timeframe established by legislation?

 

According to Article 198 of the RA Labor Code, the employer shall pay the employee 0.15 percent of the salary due for each day, but not more than the amount of the sum that is due.

 

✅What to do if the employer refuses to pay Your salary?

 

In accordance with subordination of cases established by the RA Civil Procedure Code, the protection of labor rights is conducted by the Court. 

 

By the way, according to Article 30 (3) of RA Labor Code, statute of limitations shall not cover claims for protection of employee's honour and dignity, salary, compensation of damages caused to person's life or health. 

 

Let us also add that plaintiffs on issues of salaries and commensurate money are exempted from the payment of state duty according to Article 22 point ‘a’ of the RA Law ‘’On State Duty”.

 

👉 In case of labor rights violations, You can apply to Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor using the following contacts:

 

Sofya Petrosyan

️077-930-579 (also viber, signal)

📩 spetrosyan@hcav.am

 

Samson Galstyan

️041102324

📩 sgalstyan@hcav.am

You can find contacts for legal advice on other issues HERE 

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