Saturday, 29 February 2020, the Luxembourg authorities confirmed the first patient in Luxembourg infected with COVID-19, or the Coronavirus.
With this, the issue arises of the management of the risk of contagion in businesses in Luxembourg.Article L 312-4 of the Luxembourg Labor Code grants salaried employees the right of withdrawal (droit de retrait). However, an employee cannot unjustifiably refuse to carry out his/her duties.
To benefit from the right of withdrawal, an employee must provide proof of a serious, immediate danger that cannot be avoided.
Articles L 312-1 et seq. of the Luxembourg Labor Code impose on an employer a legal obligation to ensure the health and safety of workers in the workplace.
Whether or not one is in a state of emergency, an employer is always responsible for putting into place preventive measures in the company to avoid any risks and effectively counter them, or otherwise reduce them as much as possible.
In light of the current pandemic, the Grand-Ducal Regulation of 17 April 2020 introduced additional workplace health and safety measures. These complete the provisions under Livre III of the Labor Code.
They are important and specific measures in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, which may in no circumstances involve financial expenses for employees.
This grand-ducal regulation is applicable temporarily, during the state of emergency declared under the Grand-Ducal Regulation of 18 March 2020 and confirmed by the Law of 24 March 2020, extending the state of emergency for 3 months (until 24 June 2020).
The information and recommendations to take with respect to the Coronavirus are constantly evolving under the government and health authorities’ guidance (www.sante.public.lu).
For more information or assistance on the Coronavirus COVID-19, contact our team at +352 262 562-1, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or watch the Webinar on ʺEmployer responsibilities during the public health emergency and employee rightsʺ by Mario DI STEFANO and Alessandra MEDINA – Thursday, 14 May 2020.
By Alessandra Medina, Attorney-at-law