As a result of the (partial) suspension of lessons in schools, employees will be allowed to take specific parental leave to care for their children from 1 May 2020. This can be read in a message published on the website of the ONEm/RVA. But what does this mean in concrete terms? Catherine Legardien, Legal Expert at Partena Professional, explains the main principles of this new measure.
Who is entitled to “corona” parental leave?
‘In order to be entitled to “corona” parental leave, the employee must have been bound to the employer by an employment contract for at least 1 month. He must also have at least one dependent child who has not yet reached the age of 12 (or 21 if the child is disabled). The employee who opts for “corona” parental leave will receive an allowance from the ONEm/RVA,’ explains Catherine Legardien.
What are the conditions?
“Corona” parental leave may be taken in the form of a 1/2 or 1/5 reduction in work. So a complete suspension of work will not be possible. Mind that "corona parental leave" can only be taken with the employer's permission,’ Catherine Legardien continues.
Is there an impact on "regular" parental leave?
The NEO clearly states that the period of "corona" parental leave will not be deducted from the "regular" parental leave.
In what period can this leave be taken?
The “corona” parental leave can be taken during the period from 1 May 2020 to 30 June 2020. Note that this new measure is currently still in the draft phase. So it's not in force yet. Therefore, the employee cannot yet submit a leave request, neither with his employer nor with the ONEm/RVA. Once this measure has been published in the Belgian Official Gazette, we will be able to provide more information,' concludes Catherine Legardien, Legal Expert at Partena Professional.