New Labour Code in Lithuania from July 2017

Please find below an overview of the novelties introduced by the new Lithuanian Labour Code, which entered into force on 1 July 2017.

The new Lithuanian Labour Code aims to liberalize labour relations, to ensure a balance between professional and family life, and increase employee qualifications, so as to adapt to changing labour market conditions.

To achieve these goals, the Labour Code introduces the following main changes:

New types of employment contract (i) Project-based employment contract – a fixed-term contract whereby an employee undertakes to carry out job functions for a particular project and may set their own working time regime and work either at or outside the workplace; (ii) Job-sharing employment contract –when two employees agree with an employer to share one job position, not exceeding the maximal working time for each of them; (iii) Employment contract for several employers – when an employee can work for two or more employers by performing the same job function; (iv) Apprenticeship employment contract – a fixed-term contract where a person is employed for the purpose of either acquiring qualifications and skills or to gain competences required for their profession.

From now on, fixed-term employment contracts may be for permanent work. This kind of fixed-term employment contract may not exceed 20% of the total number of employment contracts in the company.

The new Code requires the employer to set up a works council when the average number of employees is 20 or more. This requirement does not apply if the workplace has a trade union and at least 1/3 of all employees belong to the union. In smaller companies, employees may be represented by an employee trustee.

When the average number of employees is twenty or more, the employer must adopt a system of remuneration where the forms of remuneration, salary rates, grounds and procedures for bonuses, and salary indexation arrangements are listed in accordance with the category of employee positions and qualifications.

An employer with an average number of more than 50 employees must approve a policy for protection of employees’ personal data as well as approving measures to implement a policy of employees’ equal rights and monitoring principals stipulated therein.

Under the new Labour Code, a minimum salary may only be paid for unqualified work. Unqualified work is defined as work not requiring any special or professional skills.

Source: Law on the approval, entry into effect and implementation of the Labour Code of the Republic of Lithuania, No. XII-2603 passed on 14 September 2017 with it’s later amendments and supplements. 

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