The notion of collective dismissal

Collective dismissal is defined by Article 68 of the Labour Code as the dismissal within a period of 30 calendar days, for one or more reasons not related to the employee, of a number of:

  • at least 10 employees, if the employer making the lay-off has more than 20 employees and less than 100 employees;
  • at least 10% of the employees, if the employer making the lay-off employs has at least 100 employees, but not less than 300 employees;
  • at least 300 employees, if the employer making the lay-off has at least 300 employees.

In determining the number of employees collectively dismissed, account shall also be taken of those employees who have terminated their individual employment contracts on the employer’s initiative, for one or more reasons, unrelated to the person of the employee, provided that at least 5 employees have been made redundant.

Employees dismissed collectively shall mean only those dismissed for reasons which do not concern their person and not those to whom the contract of law has been terminated, by agreement of the parties, by resignation or for reasons relating to the person of the employee.

In order for a dismissal to be collective, it must therefore meet three cumulative criteria, namely:

  • it must be a certain number of employees affected by this measure;
  • the reason for the termination of the employment contract of those concerned is not related to their person;
  • the period of time during which the termination of contracts will take place shall not exceed 30 calendar days.

The collective dismissal procedure is mandatory in cases provided for by law, step by step, and taking measures to circumvent the application of the legal procedure may lead to the annulment of all dismissal decisions as unlawful.

Legal restrictions on collective dismissal

The measures relating to collective dismissal stated in Article 68-73 of the Labour Code shall not apply to employees of public institutions and public authorities, as well as to individual contracts of employment concluded for a fixed period, unless the collective dismissal took place before the expiration of those contracts.

What happens to employees affected by collective dismissal if they resume work in their former employer?

According to the Labour Code, employees affected by the collective dismissal measure are entitled within 45 calendar days from the date of dismissal to be rehired as a priority in the post re-established in the same activity, without examination, competition or probationary period.

They will be notified by the employer of the resumption of activities and the possibility that within 5 days of the notification they may give their consent to the job offered.

Irina Postelnicu

Lawyer at R&R Partners Bucharest

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