In Portugal, bosses are not allowed to text employees after work

Work from home / Illustration / Photo: Profimedia

In Portugal, from now on it will be illegal for your boss to text you after work, and companies must contribute to the costs of working from home, writes the British Mirror.

The new rules, approved by the country's parliament on Friday, are in response to an explosion of domestic work as a result of the pandemic, Portugal's ruling Socialist Party said.

Under the new laws, companies will have to help pay for home-based business expenses, such as higher electricity and internet bills.

Employers could also face penalties for contacting workers outside of working hours.


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Greater freedom for workers

New laws prohibit employers from monitoring their employees while working from home.

Amendments to Portuguese labor laws have limitations; will not apply to companies with less than ten employees.

The proposal to include the "right of disconnection" - the legal right to turn off work-related messages and devices - was rejected by Portuguese lawmakers.

The new rules will be welcome news for parents of young children, who now have the right to work without having to agree in advance with their employers until their child is eight years old.

The new measures also aim to tackle loneliness, with companies expected to hold face-to-face meetings at least every two months.

Portugal was the first country in Europe to change the rules of distance work as a result of the pandemic.

The interim measures introduced in January this year have made working from home a mandatory option, with a few exceptions. Employers were also required to provide the necessary tools to do the work from home.

While telecommuting during the pandemic has brought new flexibility to many, the need for further intervention has become apparent through issues such as unequal access to IT equipment.

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