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Global Employment Briefing: Finland, October 2017

  • Finland
  • Employment law


Advance notifications of posted workers now required

The EU Enforcement Directive concerning posted workers (2014/67/EU) was implemented in Finland by the Posted Workers Act 2016 (447/2016), which came into force on 18 June 2016. The Act’s provisions regarding notifications of posted workers came into effect on 1 September 2017.

In practice, the advance notification obligation means a company must notify the occupational safety and health authorities about its intention to post workers before work in Finland begins.

Notification of posting a worker is not required when workers are posted to Finland within a company or group of companies for no more than five working days. However, this five day posting period takes into account all postings by the same company or group of companies during the previous four calendar months. The construction sector is an exception to this rule since advance notification is always required prior to the carrying out of building work and notice must additionally be submitted to the builder and general contractor.

Notification can be provided by completing a form on the occupational safety and health authority’s website. The notification must include:

  • the identifying details of the posting company, contact information, foreign tax identification number and information regarding the responsible persons in the country in which the posting undertaking is established
  • the identifying details and contact information of the contractor -and of the builder and the general contractor in the case of building work
  • the estimated number of posted workers
  • the identifying details and contact information of the posting company’s representative in Finland (or grounds under which no representative has been appointed)
  • the starting date and the estimated duration of the posting
  • the place where the work will be performed
  • the branch in which the worker will work

Should the information given in the notification change significantly, in order for the work to continue, the posting company must submit a supplementary notification immediately.

Failure by the posting company to comply with the duty to notify may result in a fine of 1.000 to 10.000 euros.

Employer obligations to consider alternative employment and training upon termination widened

Prior to a recent Supreme Court decision (KKO:2017:55), an employer’s obligation to offer alternative work and provide training was understood to arise specifically in the context of a redundancy situation, as a means of avoiding redundancy. Accordingly, the legislation (the Employment Contracts Act) was interpreted as placing no such obligations upon an employer when facing the end of fixed-term employment. However, as a result of the Supreme Court decision, employers are now obliged to treat employees who have been engaged on a series of fixed term contracts in the same way as permanent employees and to explore options for alternative work and re-training before terminating the last contract.