Vaccination: circumstantial leave in VIA sectors

Author: Jonas Verplanken (Legal Expert)

In a previous infoflash, we explained a draft law that would entitle the worker to a leave of absence (circumstantial leave) to get the vaccine against the COVID-19 coronavirus. This draft law has not yet entered into force.

In anticipation of this law, the social partners of the VIA sectors have concluded an agreement that makes circumstantial leave possible as early as 1 March 2021.

What does this mean in practice?

Employees in these sectors are granted the right to be absent from work while retaining their normal remuneration in order to get a vaccine. The employee must of course inform his employer of this absence in advance. The internal terms and conditions can be determined at company level.

Which sectors?

This agreement will apply from 1 March 2021 in the sectors covered by the VIA agreements (318.02, 319.01, 327.01, 329.01, 330, 331, 337).


At the request of the employer, the employee must provide proof of this vaccination. This could be an invitation or an appointment confirmation.

The employer may only use the information he obtains for the purpose of organising work and keeping a proper payroll administration. The employer is not permitted to take a copy of the appointment confirmation in any form or to manually transcribe the information it contains, except for the time of the appointment. He may only register the employee's absence as 'leave of absence'. He is not permitted to record the reason for the leave of absence and/or to record that the employee has health problems.


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