New Obligation to Register Employees to Monitor Mandatory Telework
In order to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, the Belgian government requests a stricter monitoring of mandatory telework, whenever this is possible. To make the control and enforcement of the obligation to telework more efficient for the social inspection services, the government introduces a new obligation for employers to register their employees.
All employers (in all sectors, private and public), unless fully closed, have to register two figures relating to the employees (see below), using the registration tool on the e-box of the the National Social Security Office. Both data requests concern numbers. They are not nominative lists of employees (the names of the specific employees do not need to be mentioned).
The employer will be able to log on to the tool via the social security portal site or via his personal details supplemented by his company number. All companies that are already registered on the “CSAM” have an e-box. If your company is not yet registered, it will first have to register itself here.
The requested data must be filled in once a month (find the deadlines below). A one-time registration per month is sufficient.
1. Registration per business unit
The registration needs to be done separately for every business unit of the company. The employer needs to indicate whether his company has one or more business units. In case of several business units, the employer is asked to identify the business unit by means of the business unit number.
“Business unit” is defined as: a place (known with an address) where or from where a main or secondary activity of the company is carried out (e.g. operating office, department, workshop, factory, warehouse, office, shop …). You can look up the business units (and the business unit numbers) of your company in the Public Search of the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises.
Companies with more than 20 business units would be able to submit the requested data relating to all business units via the application using a structured excel file.
2. Registration of number of employees
First, the employer needs to register the total number of employees of the company. This number should reflect the situation of your company on the first working day of the month.
The employer registers the total number of employees the company employs (= bound by an employment contract, apprenticeship contract, statute, etc.). For flexi-employees the current framework agreements should be counted. Long-term ill employees and people on time credit are also counted, as are employees with an itinerant function (e.g. couriers, inspectors, etc.).
If the company makes structural use of temporary workers or employs personnel from another employer in the business unit (e.g. subcontractors, seconded staff, security personnel, etc.), then the employer should add the number that is active in the business unit to the total amount of employees.
This also applies if there are persons working structurally in the business unit on a self-employed basis (consultants, partners, etc.). It is not about a short and occasional presence, such as for repairs, cleaning, maintenance, …
Temporary employment agencies only have to declare their own staff, not the temporary workers who in principle work elsewhere. They are counted with the user
3. Registration of employees who cannot telework due to their function
Next, the employer needs to register the number of workers which cannot telework due to the nature of their function. This is defined as “any job/function that by its nature has to be done on site”, e.g. blue-collar workers, technical staff, receptionists, kitchen staff, cleaning staff, etc.
Workers who are exceptionally present because they have to, for example, to collect materials, print out certain documents or hold an evaluation interview can justify this and are not included in the number of “non-teleworkable” positions. The same applies to directors and persons belonging to line management (e.g. foremen, team leaders,…).
The same principles as under 2. apply (concerning external workers who are structurally present in the company/business unit).
4. Registration deadlines
This declaration relates to the number of employees on the first working day of the month and shall be submitted at the latest on the sixth calendar day of the month.
- The situation on the first working day of April 2021 should be declared on Tuesday 6 April 2021 at the latest.
- The situation on the first working day of May 2021 should be reported on Thursday 6 May 2021 at the latest.
- The situation on the first working day of June 2021 should be reported on Sunday, 6 June 2021 at the latest.
5. Impact of registration on control by Social inspection
The figures entered in the registration tool are not binding. If there is a deviation in the number of employees on the shop floor compared to the data entered on the form, this deviation cannot be a reason for a sanction. The inspection still has to check whether the employer has complied with the provisions on teleworking in the Ministerial Decree of 28 October 2020.
The data in the registration tool can only be seen by the Inspectorate as a tool to make the inspection more efficient.
Art. 2, §1 of the “Corona” Ministerial Decree of 28 October 2020 imposes the obligation to register the numbers as explained above. Employers who do not register their employees can be exposed to criminal or administrative sanctions (fines up to 2,000 euro, multiplied by the number of employees involved with a maximum of 100).