New laws and regulations
International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions ratified
On 8 June, Italy ratified the ILO Conventions No. 155/1981 and No. 187/2006 on Occupational Safety and Health. Following these ratifications, we expect some changes to the law, especially on health and safety matters. We will keep you updated.
Case law developments
Training of part-time employees outside their working hours
An employer can require a part-time employee to participate in a professional training course even outside their contractual working hours. The employee can refuse to attend the course only if there are well proven work, health, family or professional training reasons. In light of the above, the Italian Supreme Court ruled that an employer can lawfully dismiss an employee for objective reasons, if they refused several times to attend training, making them unfit to perform their duties.
Negative outcome of probation: what if the contractual clause is declared null and void?
The Italian Supreme Court ruled that employees hired on or after 7 March 2015, who fail to pass the probationary period agreed with the employer, are entitled only to an economic indemnity if the clause in their contract, regulating probation, is found to be null and void. Said differently, employees are not entitled to be reinstated at work in these cases.
Working during sick leave
If the employer discovers that an employee, absent due to illness, is actually working, the same employee can be lawfully dismissed, since this delays recovery and return to work. Based on this, the Italian Supreme Court ruled that a company lawfully dismissed an employee who was found working at a pub while on sick leave.
Checking employee's email accounts
Under Italian law, an employer can lawfully monitor its employees' email accounts only to avoid wrongdoing and only when there is a reasonable suspicion that such wrongdoing is actually taking place. In any event, the employer must strike a fair balance between the company's needs and the employee's privacy. In this respect, the Italian Supreme Court ruled that when an employer runs a general check on an employee's laptop for an indefinite period of time and without informing the employee that their conversations may be monitored, such behaviour is unlawful.