Features of personnel accounting / labor relations under wartime conditions
15 April 2022
Since the beginning of martial law in our country, a large number of Ukrainians have been forced to either temporarily suspend work or be left without it, especially in those cities and villages of Ukraine where hostilities are active.
Together with payroll and personnel administration experts of BDO in Ukraine, we address the summary of recent changes to the labor legislation in connection with the imposition of martial law, provided by the Law of Ukraine "On the organization of labor relations in martial law" dated 15.03.2022 No. 2136-ІХ (further — Law No. 2136).
- Employers are allowed to enter into fixed-term employment contracts with new employees for the period of martial law or for the period of replacement of a temporarily absent employee;
- For the period of martial law, the employer may, without the employee's consent, transfer the employee to another job not specified in the employment contract (except for transfer to job in another area, where active hostilities continue);
- The employer may dismiss the employee during temporary inability to work or the leave (except for maternity and childcare leave) from the first day after the end of inability to work or the leave;
- The employee may terminate the employment contract on his/her own initiative without two-week notice;
- It is possible to increase the working hours during martial law up to 60 hours per week, and for workers with reduced working hours — up to 50 hours per week. The time of the beginning and end of daily work is determined by the employer;
- The duration of weekly uninterrupted weekends can be reduced to 24 hours;
- In the case of impossibility of timely payment of wages due to military actions, the term of payment may be postponed until the resumption of an entity;
- No holidays are provided during martial law;
- During martial law, the employer may, at the employee's request, grant unpaid leave without restrictions;
- Termination of the employment contract, which does not entail termination of employment, is provided.
Many employers and employees of HR departments are probably concerned about how to continue to keep personnel records under martial law.
According to the comments of the State Labor Service and the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine, it is necessary to pay attention to the following aspects of personnel records management during martial law:
- An entity must independently determine the order of work of the personnel department, as well as the list of personnel documentation that must be drawn up during martial law. We recommend paying attention to the continuation of personnel documents, which are mandatory, including staffing, timesheets, personnel orders, P-2 identity cards.
- In order to respect the rights of employees, a mandatory requirement for the employer is to keep reliable records of work performed by employees and labor costs.
We consider it appropriate to make relevant additions to the HR records keeping instructions of an entity (if any), in particular, to determine which HR documents must be drawn up and which can wait, as well as to provide for communication between employees and employers and acquaintance with HR documents.
It should also be noted that we all will face another labor reform No. 2 during the war: a new bill was registered in the Verkhovna Rada on April 5, 2022. However, we will inform about it in more detail after adoption of the corresponding law.