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12 May 2021
On 15 April 2021 the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO) and the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) agreed to temporarily extend the interruption period for temporary lay-offs from six weeks to 10. This change will last until 30 September 2021 and makes it easier and less risky for employers to bring temporarily laid-off employees back to work.
The change means that the so-called 'interruption period' provided for in Section 7 – 3(7) of the main agreement between LO and the NHO (ie, the period during which temporarily laid-off employees can work without the lay-off being interrupted) is extended from six weeks to 10. This means that temporarily laid-off employees can be brought back to work for up to 10 weeks before:
The extended interruption period presupposes that there is a local agreement protocol between the parties to the redundancy (ie, the specific employer and the employees' representatives) that the LO and NHO main agreement's rules on seniority have been followed.
In addition to the above, the protocol between LO and NHO presupposes that there is confirmation from the government that:
The government has confirmed the above and that the rules on unemployment benefits will not be changed to the disfavour of companies or employees.
As the prerequisite for using the amended rules is that there is a local agreement protocol that the LO and NHO main agreement's seniority rules have been followed, the question arises as to whether the extended interruption period applies to non-organised enterprises. However, as the temporary lay-off rules for non-organised enterprises are largely based on the provisions of the main agreement, there is reason to believe that the extended interruption period will also apply to such enterprises. Whether this will be the case in practice remains to be seen.
For further information on this topic please contact Ole Kristian Olsby or Nina Elisabeth Thjømøe at Homble Olsby | Littler by telephone (+47 23 89 75 70) or email (email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). The Homble Olsby | Littler website can be accessed at www.homble-olsby.no.
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