The latest measures for financial aid during pandemic taken by the Romanian government in the COVID-19 context are really beneficial for the Romanian employers. The restrictions imposed, not only by the Romanian authorities, but also by governments across the world, during recent months have led to an unprecedented crisis in the economy.
The contractions of all the economies of European countries continue to persist as they begin, gradually but slowly, to resume their activity.
In this context, the Romanian authorities have conceived during recent weeks several financial aid measures, with the aim to support both employees and employers to resume their economic activity after the isolation restrictions period.
Thus, through the Emergency Ordinance 92/2020, published on May 29, the following financial support programs were adopted for the benefit of Romanian companies:
1. Partial funding of employees’ salary costs
As per the provisions of the above mentioned Ordinance 92/2020, all Romanian employers can benefit of the funding of 41.5% from the employees’ gross salaries, for a period of 3 months starting with June 1, 2020. This financial aid program applies for employees who were put under technical unemployment during the state of emergency period. More exactly, the categories of employees for which an employer qualifies to receive financial support from the authorities are:
- employees who benefited from technical unemployment allowance from the state, in accordance with provisions of Emergency Ordinance 30/2020;
- employees who had their employment contracts temporarily suspended as per the provisions of article 52, par. (1) lit. c) of the Romanian Labor Code (Law 53/2003), and did not benefit from the above mentioned allowance from the Romanian authorities during the state of emergency, or during the state of alert period.
Thus, for the categories of employees mentioned above, employers can request from the Romanian state the funding of a percentage of 41.5% of the gross salary, if they meet the following conditions:
- they maintain employment relationships with those employees at least until 31 December 2020;
- the employment contracts were temporarily suspended for a minimum period of 15 days during the state of emergency or state of alert period;
- the employees received technical unemployment allowances during the suspension period of their contracts, which were borne either by the employer, or by the state.
In the same time, Romanian employers who conduct at least one type of economic activity that is still subject after 1 June 2020 to restrictions set by the authorities, will have to choose either the funding of 41.5% from the employees’ gross salaries, or the funding of the unemployment allowances for their employees, until restrictions are lifted.
According to the established procedures, the companies will have to pay the monthly salaries to their employees, and afterwards will request for the funding of the amounts to the Romanian Territorial Employment Agencies, between the first day and the 25th day of each following month.
2. Financial aid for companies employing available labor
This type of financial aid during pandemic can be granted to employers who, anytime between 1 June 2020 and 31 December 2020, employ full-time workforce, under employment contracts for undetermined period.
More precisely, the financial aid granted by the Romanian state consists in the monthly funding, for a period of 12 months, for each newly employed person, of 50% of the gross salary, but limited to 2,500 lei per month for each new employee.
The categories of new employees for which this subsidy is granted are as follows:
- individuals over the age of 50, whose employment ceased during the state of emergency or the state of alert period for reasons not attributable to them, and who are registered as unemployed in the records of the Romanian Employment Agencies;
- individuals between the age of 16 and 29, registered as unemployed in the records of the Romanian Employment Agencies.
To be able to benefit of this financial aid, employers must keep the employment relationship with the new employees for a period of at least 12 months from the end of the 12-month period for which the financial aid is granted.
The aid is granted proportional to the actual time worked by the employee, and cannot be accumulated, for the same employee, with other subsidies granted under articles 80, 85 or 93 ^ 4 of Law no. 76/2002 (Law regarding the unemployment).
Both types of financial aid described above are granted upon written request submitted by employers to the territorial Romanian Employment Agencies.
Employers who receive any financial aid during pandemic and who terminate the employment contracts of the eligible employees before the deadlines mentioned in the Ordinance, will have to reimburse in full the amounts received from the state budget, plus the reference interest rate established by the Romanian National Bank.
The full official text of the Ordinance 92/2020 (in Romanian) can be accessed here (the document will open in new window).
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