Panama like much of the rest world is facing an unprecedented crisis. Many business owners are forced to make difficult decisions and take necessary
measures in order to protect the future well-being and operation of their companies.
Considering the current situation, there are possible options that the law and current regulations offer regarding the work force. The alternatives that
organizations have for their decision making are listed below:
A. Ideally, if the worker can maintain their tasks and produce from home, it is suggested that they be offered the option of home office. This work setup must
agreed upon and be signed by the parties. In many cases, this type of system will not work for certain employees, depending on the type of tasks performed. For the before mentioned employees there are other options.
B. Send the employee on vacations, including exhausting any proportional vacations time they are entitled to.
C. Temporary modification of the employee´s daily hourly schedule. The Parties can decide to modify the work schedule from full time to part time. This reduction may be made up to half of the working day established in the work contract and respecting the hourly rate agreed in said agreement. For the validation of the modification, the worker must sign the addendum and must be sent to the Labor Authority (MITRADEL).
D. Temporary suspension of the effects of the work contract during the pandemic. This suspension must be authorized by MITRADEL. It is a formal request and the applicant must be able to prove that the company is suffering financial repercussion.
During this difficult time, we understand that solidarity is very important, especially with one of the main assets to any company, its work force. The alternative of suspension the offers flexibility of not having to fire and more importantly awards more time for management o asses the future of the business.
If you need help or advice, the DENFAB firm can help you.