5.03.2020 Labour law

Act on combating coronavirus – provisions important for businesses

The number of infections with the SARS CoV-2 virus, commonly known as coronavirus, is increasing every day around the world. In response to the threat of outbreak of coronavirus cases in Poland, the Sejm adopted an act introducing specific solutions aimed at minimizing the risk of, prevention, counteracting and eradication of COVID-19 disease.

The act introduces, among other things:

  • possibility to instruct an employee to perform work for a specified period of time outside the usual place of work (remote work from home) to counteract COVID-19,
  • right to receive additional care allowance for a period of no more than 14 days due to an employee released from performing work because of the need to personally take care of the child in the event of the closure of a nursery, children’s club, kindergarten or school attended by a child,
  • possibility for the President of the Council of Ministers to issue, by way of an administrative decision, instructions to business entities aimed at counteracting COVID-19 (the instructions are subject to immediate execution upon their delivery or announcement and do not require justification, and their execution takes place on the basis of a contract concluded with a business entity by a competent voivode and is financed from the state budget),
  • granting a tour operator the right to be returned the payments transferred to the Travel Guarantee Fund, if a traveler withdraws from the contract or a tour operator terminates the contract for participation in a tourist event due to the outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 virus,
  •  possibility for the Chief Sanitary Inspector to impose obligations on employers to undertake specific preventive or control activities and distribution, including personal protective equipment or medical devices, ·         the rules for applying mandatory quarantine or epidemiological supervision to healthy persons who have been in contact with persons suffering from infectious diseases specified in the list of the minister competent for health,
  • possibility to temporary limit the activity of businesses introduced by the ordinance of the Council of Ministers in the event of an epidemic or an epidemic emergency of nature and size exceeding the possibilities of action of competent government administration bodies and local government units.

Learn more: Coronavirus – obligations and rights of employer and employee

At present, one case of infection with the SARS CoV-2 virus causing COVID-19 has been reported in Poland. The Chief Sanitary Inspectorate monitors the epidemiological situation on an ongoing basis and conducts information activities, such issuing messages and publishing on its pages a compendium of information about the virus, disease caused by the virus and methods of preventing infection.

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