We present the most important changes in the labor law that came into force on 1 January 2023. We also remind you of the annual obligations of the employer and indicate what aspects the PIP will pay attention to during the inspections scheduled for 2023.

MINIMUM REMUNERATION CHANGE

In 2023, an exceptional double change in the minimum remuneration will occur. It is related
to the annual average consumer price index projected for 2023.

according to the general rules, if this index is at least 105%, two dates are set for changing
the amount of the minimum remuneration and the amount of the minimum hourly rate.
In the assumptions of the draft state budget for 2023, adopted by the Council of Ministers,
the amount of the average annual index of growth in consumer prices was projected at 107.8%.

Accordingly:

  •  as of 1st January 2023, the minimum remuneration for work is PLN 3,490 (hourly rate: PLN 22.80);
  • as of 1st July 2023, the minimum remuneration for work will be PLN 3,600 (hourly rate: PLN 23.50).

As a reminder, the minimum hourly rate also applies to those providing services based on civil law contracts (e.g., contracts of mandate, contracts for the provision of services (B2B)).

The change in the minimum remuneration is also related to changes in the number of certain employee benefits, including compensation for harassment or discrimination (compensation in an amount not lower than the minimum remuneration), the maximum amount of severance pay for so-called “collective redundancies” (the amount of cash severance pay cannot exceed the amount of 15 times the minimum remuneration), or an allowance for night work (20% of the hourly rate resulting from the minimum remuneration).

AUTO SUBSCRIPTION TO EMPLOYEE CAPITAL PLANS (“ECP”)

According to the Act on the ECP, every 4 years, by the last day of February in a given year, the employing entity shall inform the employed person who has made a declaration of resignation from payment into the ECP to start making contributions to the ECP again for that individual. It will be the first automatic subscription to the ECP since the Act on the ECP came into effect. The next such automatic subscription will take place in 2027.

Employers should provide information on auto subscriptions to employed individuals who have resigned from paying contributions to the ECP by 28th February 2023. If such individuals
do not re-submit their declaration of resignation, they will be automatically registered
in the ECP as of 1st April 2023, and the employer will be obliged to remit to the financial institution the accrued and collected contribution to the ECP on the remuneration paid to such individual starting from March 2023.

The obligation to provide the above information applies to all employing entities that have implemented ECP. Such information may be provided in the manner adopted by the employer, e.g. by e-mail.

INFORMATION REGARDING THE COMPANY SOCIAL BENEFITS FUND (“CSBF”)

We would like to remind you that by 31st January 2023, employers with fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees as of 1st January 2023 should inform employees of the lack of creation of the CSBF and the lack of payment of holiday allowance in a given calendar year (if such
a decision has been made).

Such information should be included in the collective bargaining agreement or remuneration rules. If the employer does not have the above documents in force, the information should be communicated to employees in the manner adopted by the employer.

Failure to provide the above information may result in an obligation to pay holiday allowance to employees (in the case of employees taking 14 calendar days of uninterrupted holiday leave).

PIP ACTIVITIES AND STRATEGIES FOR 2023

In the 2023 program, the PIP has identified three main strategies in the following areas:

  • inspections and preventive actions for the construction sector – increased supervision is to include, in particular, the elimination of accident risks;
  •  control of risks of chemical agents in the work environment – in particular, at workplaces where chemicals are produced or used for which levels of maximum permissible concentrations in the work environment have been established (NDS);
  • intensified supervision of workplaces – in particular, in plants where particularly high occupational risks are expressed by high exceedances of the norms of factors harmful to health and high accident rates.

In addition, the PIP during inspections will verify issues related to, i.a.:

  • remote work;
  • mobbing/bullying;
  • accuracy of employment under civil law contracts;
  • working time and the payment of remuneration and other benefits from the employment relationship;
  • combating illegal employment and controlling the payment of remuneration.

In 2023 PIP plans to conduct 60,000 inspections, mainly at employers who entrust work
to foreigners, especially citizens of Ukraine. The PIP plans to carry out 8,000 inspections
of compliance with the ban on civil law contracts under conditions indicating the existence
of an employment relationship.

REMOTE WORK IN THE LABOR CODE

The work in the Sejm (lower house of Parliament) on the introduction of remote work into
the Labor Code is coming to an end. At the last session of the Sejm (11, 12, 13 January 2023), all of the amendments of the Senate (higher house of Parliament) were rejected.

Therefore, the amendments regarding the employer’s obligation regarding accepting the request for remote work filed by an employee raising a child to the age of 10, extending the period of occasional remote work to 30 days and extending the vacatio legis to 3 months were rejected. Additionally, the Sejm did not agree to one of the Senate’s amendments, which was approved by the Commission on amendments to the codifications concerning the introduction of an obligation for the employer to take into account a request for remote work made by an employee with a disability certificate or a certificate with a significant degree of disability.

The final text of the law adopted by the Sejm will be presented to the Polish President for signature.

INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF TRAVEL ALLOWANCES

Another amendment to the labor law relates to the number of travel allowances and lump sums for business trips. According to the Ordinance of the Minister of Family and Social Policy of 14 November 2022:

  • for the time of a domestic business trip falling as of 1 January 2023, the travel allowance and lump-sum accommodation allowance will be respectively set at PLN 45 and PLN 67.50;
  • for the time of a business trip abroad, started and not completed before 29 November 2022, business travel payments will be determined based on new, higher rates.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE WORK-LIFE BALANCE DIRECTIVE AND THE DIRECTIVE ON TRANSPARENT WORKING CONDITIONS

Another change to the Labor Code in 2023 will be the introduction of solutions resulting from the implementation of EU directives on transparent and predictable working conditions in the EU and on work-life balance for parents and guardians (so-called “work-life balance”). The Council of Ministers approved the draft amendment, which was submitted to the Sejm on 11 January and has been sent for the first reading. The Sejm will work on the draft at its next session, which will be held on 25 and 26 January 2023.

As a reminder, the draft amendments include the introduction of new types of leave (e.g., 5-day care leave), a ban on obliging an employee to inform about undertaking an additional activity that is not competitive with the employer’s activity, restrictions on the conclusion of probationary contracts and the introduction of an obligation to justify the termination of fixed-term contracts (until now, this obligation applied only to employment contracts concluded for an indefinite period).

In case of any questions, feel free to contact Wioleta Polak, head of the labor law team.

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