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Global employment briefing: Austria, June 2018

  • Austria
  • Employment law

12-06-2018

New sick pay rules and a ban on smoking at work

Sick pay alignment

On July 2018, the statutory regulations regarding sick pay for illness or accident will be aligned for blue collar workers and white collar employees. As a result:

  • Both blue collar workers and white collar employees will be entitled to 8 weeks’ full pay and 4 additional weeks at half pay after the first year of service. At present, those with less than 5 years‘ service receive only 6 weeks' full pay (plus 4 weeks‘ half pay), rising to 8 weeks‘ full pay (plus 4 weeks‘ half pay) only after the 5th year of service.
  • Sick pay entitlement will increase to 10 weeks‘ full pay (plus 4 weeks‘ half pay) after 15 years‘ service and then 12 weeks full pay (plus 4 weeks‘ half pay) after 25 years‘ service.
  • In addition, both blue collar workers and white collar employees will be entitled to 8 weeks’ full pay if they are involved in an accident at work or are diagnosed with an occupational disease, regardless of other sick leave entitlements.

If apprentices are unable to work due to sickness or accident, they will be entitled to 8 weeks’ full pay, followed by an additional 4 weeks at half pay, instead of 4 weeks´ full pay and 2 weeks at half pay. The new regulations will apply to apprenticeships started after 30 June 2018.

Smoking ban in the workplace

From May 2018, both employers and employees are prohibited from smoking in the workplace if there is at least one non-smoking employee. The new regulations apply to traditional tobacco products, herbal smoking products, and e-cigarettes, as well as hookahs. If the employer has sufficient space available, specific smoking rooms can be established.

Sick pay for the self-employed

From July 2018, sick pay will be paid from the fourth day of sick leave instead of the 43rd day. Sick leave must last for at least 43 days in order to qualify for payment. The self-employed will be entitled to receive sick pay for a period of 20 weeks in total.

For more information contact

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