Fines being issued for staff working when still on ERTE up to 6,000 euros per employee

2020/08/13 16:55:04 Written by Canarian Weekly Business

The first sanctions have been imposed by Work Inspections on companies and employers, that have failed to comply with the demands and requirements to avail themselves of the special protection of the Temporary Employment Regulation Files (ERTE), in the Canary Islands.

The Ministry of Labour says that the sanctions are more than justified in the face of the dishonesty of some companies that, among other situations that the Inspection has reported on in the islands, have workers in ERTE, are receiving public aid, and at the same time that they are teleworking full time from home.

Cases have also been detected, of workers being reactivated from the ERTEs to carry out partial days, when in fact they do full ones, still collecting the public benefit fraudulently.

These employers do not realise that fines of up to 6,000 euros per employee can be sanctioned for not communicating with SEPE "in advance" to re-activate their employment.

However, in recent weeks some of the sanctions that are being communicated do not respond to a situation of fraud, but to a "formal and bureaucratic issue" in the communication to the SEPE of the registration of workers who leave the ERTE, which is generating great discomfort amongst employers in the Canary Islands, and unnecessary fines that will be appealed.

The process of taking an employee off the ERTE and re-instating them, takes three days for all departments and paperwork to be completed correctly. The Ministry says it should always be communicated before the end of the month to prevent the SEPE from authorizing the payment of benefits.

“The employer still tells us that he wants a person to start working the next day. We make the document, we send it to the worker, we send it to the General Directorate of Labour to report the modification, to the Treasury to register it and that it is recorded that they are leaving the ERTE, and then an excel must be sent to the SEPE to tell them That worker leaves the ERTE or goes from part-time to full-time or whatever. Well, as you do the latter two or three days later, they give you a sanction that is excessive,” says spokesman Carlos Talavera.