(English) THE PART-TIME EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT: NEW REGULATIONS Starting from January 2020, the provisions imposing a surcharge upon employers on part-time employment contracts have been removed under the Law no. 263/2019, published in the Official Gazette 1054/2019.

Here below you can find a more detailed overview on the new provisions in force starting from this year, as well as brief summary of the legal conditions to be complied with by the employers when concluding a fixed-term employment contract – often used when it comes to part-time employment contracts.

TAX REGIME FOR PART-TIME EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT

Under the former regulations, for part-time employees, employers were bound to pay social charges and heath insurance charges corresponding to the minimum gross salary guaranteed at national level even if their revenues were less than the minim wage itself (for being proportional to the number of hours actually worked). Employed students and pensioners but also employees with revenues greater than the minimum wage resulting from a plurality of employment contracts were an exception to this rule.

With the new law, the amount of the employers’ social contributions (social security or social health insurance) for part-time employment contracts shall be proportional to the salary paid by the employer. Such new measure is firstly aimed at correcting a legislative anomaly that is very likely to explain the reluctance of a large part of the employers about part-time employment contracts.

For the record, part-time employment contract is an employment contract under which the weekly or monthly number of work hours is under the legal number of working hours performed by a full time employee, namely 40 hours per week. It is also to be noted that a part-time employee shall not do overtime, except under force majeure. Moreover and in order to enhance access of the employee to a full-time job, the employer is bound to inform the employee under a part-time employment contract about any availability of a full-time job opportunity within the company.

Finally, an employer may hire part-time employees either under a permanent employment contract or under a fixed-term employment contract.

FIXED-TERM EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT (CDD)

In Romania, the employment contract is usually concluded for a permanent term. By way of exception, the individual employment contract may also be concluded for a fixed term, with written mention of the work term under the contract.
When concluding a fixed-term employment contract and in order to be allowed to turn to such contract, the employer is bound to comply with certain conditions as under the Labor Code. These conditions are the following:
  • Replacing an employee whose employment contract is suspended, except for when participating to a strike;
  • Temporary growth and /or modification of the employer’s activity structure;
  • Performance of a seasonal activity;
  • When the contract is concluded according to legal provisions issued to temporarily foster certain categories of unemployed persons;
  • When hiring a person who within the following 5 years shall fulfil the conditions for retirement according to the requirements for age retirement;
  • During one’s mandate when filling in an eligible position in labor or trade unions or non-governmental organisations, during the mandate;
  • When hiring retired persons who may, under the legal conditions, cumulate pension and salary;
  • In other cases expressly provided for by the special laws or for certain works, projects or programs performance.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE FIXED-TERM EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT

It must be noted that the (total) term of a fixed-term employment contract must not be higher than 36 months. Moreover, parties are not allowed to conclude successively more than 3 fixed-term employment contracts. Nevertheless, if such contract is concluded for replacing an employee whose contract is suspended, the term of the fixed-term employment contract shall expire at the end of the suspension term of the other employee.

According to the Labor Code, are deemed to the successively concluded the contracts signed within the following three months from cessation of a fixed-term employment contract on the same position. In this particular case, the fixed-term employment contract can not last for more than 12 months.

Finally, it must be also noted that, according to the Labor Code, the individual employment contract shall be concluded before the employee actually starts working, upon production of a medical certificate certifying the capability of the future employee to fil the said position, under a fine penalty. Furthermore, according to the legal provisions, any contract concluded without a medical certificate shall be null and void.

The employment contract shall be registered in the Electronic Register of Employees (REVISAL) at the latest on the last working day before commencement of the activity. The employer shall provide the employee an original counterpart of the individual employment contract prior to actually starting to work.

As far as the probationary period for fixed-term contracts is concerned, it depends on the term of the contract but also on the position filed by the employee, namely:
  • 5 working days for a contract under 3 months;
  • 15 working days for a contract between 3 to 6 months ;
  • 30 working days for an executive position, or 45 working days for a management position, for a contract exceeding 6 months.