Comparative Guides
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Results: 4 Answers
Labour and Employment
8.
Tips and traps
8.1
What are your top tips for navigating the employment regime and what potential sticking points would you highlight?
 
France
The first thing that entrepreneurs who are planning to hire their first employees must do is determine which collective bargaining agreement (CBA) applies, according to the relevant business sector. The CBA will outline many of the terms and conditions of employment; the mere application of the French Labour Code is therefore insufficient.

Working hours are a crucial issue in the employment relationship in France, and must be carefully considered in view of the significant risks incurred (financial and criminal) in the event of non-compliance with the applicable rules.

Moreover, the French Labour Code provides that in the context of a dispute before the employment tribunal, if the judge has any doubt, this will benefit the employee. In general, and with some exceptions, the burden of proof lies mainly with the employer.

Another sticking point to be highlighted is the fact that all French companies with at least 11 employees must establish a social and economic committee (SEC). Following recent legislative amendments, the SEC has subsumed and superseded all employee representative bodies (ie, staff delegates, works councils and hygiene, safety and working conditions committees) and must now be established in place of the previous representative bodies, and in any case before 1 January 2020.

Given the specific nature of French labour law - which is characterised by a patchwork of sources and continual evolution - it is strongly recommended that foreign entrepreneurs who hire employees in France be assisted by a lawyer specialising in labour and employment law.

For more information about this answer please contact: Emilie Ducorps-Prouvost from Soulier Avocats
 
France
The first thing that entrepreneurs who are planning to hire their first employees must do is determine which collective bargaining agreement (CBA) applies, according to the relevant business sector. The CBA will outline many of the terms and conditions of employment; the mere application of the French Labour Code is therefore insufficient.

Working hours are a crucial issue in the employment relationship in France, and must be carefully considered in view of the significant risks incurred (financial and criminal) in the event of non-compliance with the applicable rules.

Moreover, the French Labour Code provides that in the context of a dispute before the employment tribunal, if the judge has any doubt, this will benefit the employee. In general, and with some exceptions, the burden of proof lies mainly with the employer.

Another sticking point to be highlighted is the fact that all French companies with at least 11 employees must establish a social and economic committee (SEC). Following recent legislative amendments, the SEC has subsumed and superseded all employee representative bodies (ie, staff delegates, works councils and hygiene, safety and working conditions committees) and must now be established in place of the previous representative bodies, and in any case before 1 January 2020.

Given the specific nature of French labour law - which is characterised by a patchwork of sources and continual evolution - it is strongly recommended that foreign entrepreneurs who hire employees in France be assisted by a lawyer specialising in labour and employment law.

For more information about this answer please contact: Emilie Ducorps-Prouvost from Soulier Avocats