EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change

Greece: Obligation to consider alternatives to collective dismissals

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Greece
Phase: Management
Type:
Obligation to consider alternatives to collective dismissals
Last modified: 10 August, 2017
Native name:

ΠΔ 178/2002: Μέτρα προστασίας των εργαζομένων σε περίπτωση μεταβίβασης επιχειρήσεων, εγκαταστάσεων ή τμημάτων εγκαταστάσεων ή επιχειρήσεων, σε συμμόρφωση προς την οδηγία 98/50/ΕΚ του Συμβουλίου; Ν. 3846/2010: Εγγυήσεις για την εργασιακή ασφάλεια και άλλες διατάξεις.

English name:

PD 178/2002: Μeasures for safeguarding of employees rights in the event of transfers of undertakings , businesses or parts of businesses, transposing Directive 98/50/EC; Law 3846/2010: Guarantees for job security and other provisions.

Article

3 para. of 1 PD 178/2002; 4 of Law 3846/2010

Description

Collective dismissal is defined as those affecting more than 6 employees in companies with 20 to 150 employees, or those affecting 5% or 30 employees in companies with more than 150 employees.

Although there is no explicit legal obligation to consider alternatives to collective dismissals, the legislation does discuss the possibility of alternatives, foreseeing that undertakings and undertakings with restricted economic activity may, instead of terminating an employment agreement, serve written notice temporarily laying-off salaried employees after they have first consulted with the employees’ legal representatives. Notification may be via a single notice posted in a conspicuous and accessible place at the undertaking. Consultation takes place at a place and time set by the employer. The relevant departments of the Labour Inspectorate (SEPE), the Social Insurance Foundation (IKA) and the Labour Force Employment Organisation (OAED) must be notified by the employer in any manner of the declaration of temporary layoffs of all or part of the workforce.

The employees’ representatives are considered to be the legal representatives of the union that has at least 70% of the company’s employees as members, and the majority of those being dismissed. If there is more than one union in an undertaking or establishment, without any union covering 70% of the employees and the majority of those being dismissed, the persons nominated by the boards of the unions in a joint statement to the employer shall be considered the employees’ representatives. These representatives shall be designated in proportion to the strength of the unions, provided that they cover 70% of the employees and the majority of those being dismissed. If there is no union or unions meeting the conditions of the preceding paragraphs, the employees shall be represented by a committee comprising three members in the case of undertakings with between twenty and fifty employees and five members for undertakings or establishments with more than fifty workers. If there are no employees’ representatives in the undertaking, information and consultation takes place with all the employees. 

Comments

Under Law 3846/2010, in the case of the temporary lay-off measure being implemented: 'Notification may be via a single notice posted in a conspicuous and accessible place at the undertaking. Consultation takes place at a place and time set by the employer' in derogation from the general provisions on information and consultation, as laid down in Presidential Decree 240/2006, which transposes Council Directive 2002/14/EC into Greek law and provides that information and consultation take place at the 'appropriate time and place and in the appropriate fashion.' This measure was on the one hand criticised by the unions as restricting the employee's right to information and consultation, but on the other hand it was considered by the government and employers’ associations to be important in promoting alternative measures to avoid dismissals.

Cost covered by
  • Employer
Involved actors
  • Trade union
  • Works council
  • Other
Involvement others
Labour Inspectorate (SEPE), Social Insurance Foundation (IKA), Labour Force Employment Organisation (OAED)
Thresholds
20
7
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