Smart working (“lavoro agile” in the Italian parlance, governed by Law No. 81 dated 22 May 2017 - "Law 81") consists of a method of execution of the subordinate employment relationship characterized by the absence of time or space constraints and an organization by phases, cycles and objectives, established by an agreement between the employee and the employer. All this in order to allow the employee to reconcile life and work times, facilitating, at the same time, the growth of the employee’s productivity. The economic treatment does not suffer any variation between the smart working employees and their colleagues who perform their activity in ordinary ways.
The emergency caused by Covid-19 highlighted the usefulness of smart working, despite the fact that before the pandemic this kind of subordinate work was not very widespread. This is mainly in order to reduce contacts between people and to facilitate life/work reconciliation.
As it is known, as a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic, the law intervened, facilitating, with a much faster procedure, the use of smart working, without the obligation of an individual agreement between the employer and the employee.
The Law No. 87 dated June 17, 2021, which converted the Law Decree dated April 22, 2021, No. 52, the so-called "Reopening Decree", provides for the postponement of the deadline for the adoption of the smart working in the time of the pandemic from September 30 to December 31, 2021 (so-called "simplified smart working").
Therefore, up to December 31, 2021, the private sector employers will be able to continue to apply the simplified procedure for smart working, benefitting from some simplifications:
it will not be necessary to sign an individual agreement with the employee;
the disclosure obligations regarding safety in the workplace will be deemed to have been fulfilled electronically also by using the documentation made available on the website of the National Institute for Accident Insurance at Work (INAIL);
it will be possible to use the simplified telematic procedure, indicated by the Ministry of Labor notwithstanding the provisions of Article 23 of Law 81.
Therefore, if in accordance with Law 81 for the use of the smart working it is required an individual agreement between the employer and the employee and also a particular communication process towards the Ministry of Labor, the activation of the simplified smart working procedure implies only the sending, through dedicated portals, of the following signed documentation:
the excel file to indicate the list of employees involved;
the communication model of the work periods carried out in the smart working modality.
All in order to simplify the use of this method of work which has proved, and is proving to be, a very useful tool for the purpose of containing the Covid-19 pandemic.
Avv. Guido Brocchieri
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