Amendments to the Labour Code regarding the regulation of part-time work

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On 29 June, Federal Law No. 125-FZ* “On amending the Labour Code of the Russian Federation” (“Federal Law No. 125”) will come into effect.

The amendments will be connected primarily with the regulation of part-time work. It also clarifies how work on weekends and public holidays should be paid for. We should note that Federal Law No. 125 does not introduce new regulations regarding working time, but it entrenches provisions from Soviet employment law and clarifies uncertainties which employers faced in practice.

This Federal Law is based on state authorities’ extensive work on incorporating legal acts of the USSR and the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, or particular provisions of such acts, into legislation of the Russian Federation.

Below we provide more detailed comments regarding the amendments that have been introduced.

Federal Law No. 125 introduces new provisions regarding the regulation of part-time work.
  • It clarifies that it is possible to establish not only a “part-time working day” or a “part-time working week”, but both regimes simultaneously, including also splitting a working day into parts (Article 93 of the Russian Labour Code - the “Labour Code”).
PG comment: This amendment can enable companies to be more flexible in regulating working time.
  • Federal Law No. 125 clarifies that a part-time work regime can be established for a fixed time period agreed by the parties to the employment contract, or for an unlimited period of time (Article 93 of the Labour Code).
  • In the cases when the employer must establish a part-time work regime at the request of an employee of a particular category, it will be possible to establish such regime “taking into account the conditions of production (business) of such employer”. Additionally, it clarifies that the employer establishes a part-time work regime for the duration of the circumstances which served as a ground for such regime (Article 93 of the Labour Code).
Комментарий ПГEmployers will now be able to take into account not only employees’ interests, but also the requirements of business, schedules of different departments, and so on. This may mean that if an employee’s interests contradict the established working conditions in the particular company, the employer will have a right to deny such regime to this employee until a compromise solution is found. We should note that the wording of this article leaves room for different interpretations.

The uncertainty with open-ended working day during part-time work has been eliminated (Article 101 of the Labour Code). This regime can be established when two conditions are met simultaneously:
  1. by mutual consent between the parties to an employment contract;
  2. in the case of a part-time working week, but with a full working day (shift).
  • Employers will have a right not to provide a lunch break (a break for rest and meals) when the duration of the employee’s working time (shift) does not exceed four hours per day (Article 108 of the Labour Code).
Certain clarifications have also been added with respect to the regulation of how work on weekends and public holidays should be paid for.
  • It has been clarified that work on weekends and public holidays (paid for and compensated in accordance with Article 153 of the Labour Code) is not classified as overtime work and should not be taken into account when overtime work is calculated (even if the duration of such work exceeds the established limit). In this case, all employees should be paid at an increased rate for the hours (between 0 and 24 hours) they have actually worked during a weekend or a public holiday (Articles 152 and 153 of the Labour Code).
Комментарий ПГ
This clarification eliminates extensive disputes regarding how work on a weekend or a public holiday should be paid for if an employee's working time on such a day exceeded the established limit.

Implications for companies

We believe that the amendments to the Labour Code described above will enable companies to use more flexible approaches to regulating work time. We recommend that companies revise or supplement their internal regulations taking into account the amendments adopted, as well as to assess whether they need to change their procedures for calculating payments to employees (especially if such procedures are automated and software is used).

Help from your advisers

Pepeliaev Group's lawyers have vast experience in advising clients on all employment law matters and stand ready to provide the necessary legal support regarding any matters connected with the developments described above.

* Federal Law No. 125-FZ “On amending the Labour Code of the Russian Federation” dated 18 June 2017.

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