Changes and Amendments to the Employment Relationships Act

07. december 2023

The Act amending and supplementing the Employment Relationships Act (ZDR-1D) was published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia on November 15, 2023. We present some of the new provisions it introduces.

Employment contracts must now include provisions regarding the additional payments and employer-provided training. In both cases, employment contracts may refer to applicable Acts, collective agreements, or the employer's general acts concerning these matters.

An employee who cares for a child up to the age of eight years or provides care may propose the conclusion of an employment contract for part-time during the employment relationship to balance professional and personal life.

The time frame for a repeated violation in connection with written warnings by the employer to the employee before a regular termination of the employment contract on fault-based grounds has changed. Before a regular termination of the employment contract on fault-based grounds, the employer must, within 60 days of identifying the violation and no later than six months from the occurrence of the violation, issue a written warning to the employee regarding the fulfillment of obligations and the possibility of termination if the employee violates contractual or other obligations arising from the employment relationship within six months (previously one year) after receiving the written warning, unless otherwise specified by a collective agreement at the industry level, but not exceeding 18 months (previously 2 years). Furthermore, the employee now has the right that the employer allows him/her to respond to the alleged violations within three to thirty working days from receiving the written warning, unless there are circumstances that make it unreasonable for the employer to expect the employee to do so. The decision regarding the written warning before a regular termination of the employment contract on fault-based grounds must be issued within eight days after the employee's statement on alleged violations, in written form, explained, and delivered to the employee.

Article 141.a introduces a subsidiary liability, within the construction industry. It stipulates that if employer, who is a subcontractor, fails to provide payment to the employee, the contractor whose direct subcontractor is the employer shall be subsidiarily liable for the fulfillment of this obligation.

One of the main novelties of this amendment is the right to disconnect, as outlined in the new Article 142.a. Employers are obligated to provide employees with the right to disconnect, ensuring that the employee will not be available to the employer during the period of exercise of the right to rest or during justified absences from work. For this purpose, the employer must take appropriate measures within one year of the law's enactment.

Special protection is provided to employees who are victims of domestic violence. According to this Act, this is an employee, who has experienced one of the forms of domestic violence defined in the act that regulates domestic violence prevention within the last two years, has reported the violence to the police or social work center, and the proceedings related to violence and its consequences have not yet been completed, as evidenced by a certificate from the social work center assessing the risk due to domestic violence, courts and other institutions. Such an employee is entitled to five paid working days of absence from work in a calendar year for the purpose of arranging protection, legal and other proceedings, and addressing the consequences of domestic violence. Employees who are victims of domestic violence may be assigned work beyond regular working hours, have their working hours unevenly distributed, temporarily have their working hours changed, or be assigned night work, only with their prior written consent.