Employees of foreign companies leaving Russia: how to act?
Every day more and more foreign companies are leaving the Russian market. According to the latest data, more than 400 foreign enterprises have suspended their activities on the territory of the Russian Federation, in connection with which 1,000 employees employed at these enterprises will lose their jobs.
Alexander Arbouzov, Partner and Head of Corporate Practice, talks about the consequences for employees who find themselves in a difficult situation.
From the point of view of labor legislation, the consequences for employees depend on the "grounds for business termination", explains Alexander Arbouzov.
It happens that downtime occurs for reasons beyond the control of the employer and employee. In this case, payment is made in the amount of at least two-thirds of earnings. Social benefits and accruals remain unchanged.
The announcement of downtime is legal (although it can be challenged) in a situation where the reasons for the suspension of work are of a production nature, for example, due to foreign sanctions, supply chains are disrupted by third parties or there are problems with the sale of finished products, says Alexander Arbouzov.
However, there are non-production reasons:
"That is, if one of the foreign beneficiaries decided to simply support Ukraine in this way, then the employer will not just get rid of the obligation to pay salaries to employees. You will have to pay 100% of salary (unlike downtime, in which at least 2/3 are paid) all the time of such suspension, regardless of whether the employee is involved or not, and it will be unavoidable: non-payment of wages for a period of more than several months (usually two) is a criminal offense on the part of the employer under article 145.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation," the lawyer says.
"In addition, every employee has the right to work, enshrined in the Constitution of the Russian Federation, and violation of this right in practice can lead to complaints from workers and their trade unions to labor inspectorates and lawsuits. And although such complaints and lawsuits are unlikely, such a possibility still exists", concludes Alexander Arbouzov.