Article

Proposal to align conditions for self-organiser exemption

On 23 January 2024, the Danish Parliament approved a bill amending the Working Time Act, which among other things, means that as of 1 July 2024, employers are obliged to implement a system to record employees working time. Certain employees defined as “self organisers” can be exempted from the time registration requirement. Currently there is a discrepancy between the exemption condition pursuant to the Working Time Act and the Executive Order on Hours of Rest, to resolve the disparity a proposal has been made to align the conditions for self organisers.

 

From 1 July 2024, employers are required to provide an objective, reliable and accessible working time registration system for employees, enabling measurement of each employee’s daily working hours. The purpose of the time registration requirement is to ensure compliance with mandatory rest periods.

The rules on rest hours are found in the Working Time Act, the Working Environment Act, and the Executive Order on Hours of Rest. The Working Time Act contains rules on maximum weekly working hours (the 48-hour rule), night work and daily breaks. The Working Environment Act and the Executive Order on Hours of Rest contain provisions on the right to an 11-hour daily rest period and a weekly day off.

The new rules on time registration include an exemption provision, meaning that certain employees (“self-organizers) can be exempted from the requirement to register their daily working hours. However, the exemption presupposes that the employee can be exempted from the Working Time Act’s rules on maximum weekly working hours (the 48-hour rule), breaks, and the special rules for night work, as well as from the rest time rules in the Working Environment Act and in the Executive Order on Hours of Rest Act.

The conditions for exempting an employee from the Working Time Act and the Executive Order on Hours of Rest are not identical. Therefore, it has been necessary to assess whether the employee qualifies for the exemption using both sets of conditions to determine if an employee can be exempted from the time registration requirement.

On 22 April 2024, the Danish Parliament sent a draft amendment to the Executive Order on Hours of Rest for consultation. The proposed amendment means that the exemption conditions in the Executive Order on Hours of Rest will be aligned with the conditions in the Working Time Act.  This will give clarity to the rules and will mean that an employee who meets the condition requirements will be exempt from both sets of rules, and thus can also be exempted from the requirement to register working hours. The alignment will not change the provisions of the Working Environment Act. If the Executive Order on Hours of Rest is amended as proposed, the following conditions for exemption as a self-organizer will apply to both sets of rules:

  1. the length of the employee’s working hours cannot be measured or predetermined due to the unique nature of the role, or
  2. the employee can organize their own working hours and can make independent decisions or has managerial functions.

 

If an employee meets these conditions, the employee will be exempt from the requirement to register working hours.

It is proposed that the amendments to the Executive Order on Hours of Rest enter into force on 1 July 2024 simultaneously with amendments to the Working Hours Act.

Mette Klingsten Law Firm advises all types of employers on the time registration requirement and has developed a comprehensive time registration package which prepares employers to be compliant with the new rules. The time registration package includes, among other things, a time registration policy, assessment of self-organizer status, and supplements to employment contracts. The package can be adjusted according to an employer’s size and needs.

Please contact Mette Klingsten Law Firm for further information about the time registration package or if you have any questions regarding this.

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