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Can employers force their employees to take leave/holidays?

Saturday 25/04/2020
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In the absence of collective agreements, holidays are the result of an individual agreement between employer and employee.

You can ask the employees to take holidays, but certainly not oblige them. Check the labour regulations to see if no collective agreements have been made.

Article 63.2 of the Royal Decree of 30 March 1967 provides that agreements are possible at company level and that in that case these agreements have a higher legal value than individual consultation. 

The employment regulations may contain rules on the compulsory taking of holidays. You can also amend your employment regulations in this sense, but you must follow the procedure for amending the employment regulations. If employees and their representatives are aware of the seriousness of the situation, such an amendment can go smoothly. 

You can also temporarily change the working hours. This does not require an amendment to the labour regulations. However, you must notify this change 24 hours in advance. 

If you have other questions regarding the Corona crisis, please visit our special FAQ

Last update: 30/04/2020

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Saskia Lombaerts
Saskia Lombaerts
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An Lettens
An Lettens
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