Turkey: Amendments In The Labor Regulations In Turkey By The Law No 6552

Last Updated: 25 November 2015
Article by İzzet Gürler and Özlem Kurt

The Law Amending Certain Labour Laws and Regulations and Restructuring Tax Debts, numbered 6552 entered into effect on 10.09.2014 makes a few amendments in the business life.

The employer–subcontractor relationships in accordance with the amendments in the Labor Law numbered 4857 by the law no. 6552

1. By virtue of the New Law, the employers will be able to able to appeal to the labor courts within 30 days as of the receipt date of the reports which is made by the labor supervisors to audit the relationship between the employers and subcontractors and to determine if there is potential for collusion or not, which was previously stipulated as a period of 6 days. In addition, the parties will be able to appeal against the decisions given by the labor courts before the Supreme Court.

2. Additionally, upon the application of the employees or on a monthly basis, the employers will audit the subcontractors regarding the payment of the wages of the employees and if the wages of subcontractor's employees are not paid, the employers shall deduct this unpaid amount from subcontractors' progress payment and deposit the amount into the bank accounts of the subcontractor's employees. Before this amendment, the payment of the wages of the subcontractor's employees has been under the initiative of the employers, but as of the date of 10.09.2014 it is an obligation for the employers.

3. The employers are obliged to audit the subcontractors regarding the usage of the annual paid leaves of the subcontractor's employees and if the subcontractor's employees has not used their annual paid leaves, the employers shall ensure it. The subcontractor shall submit a copy of annual leave form to the employer.

4. The annual paid leaves of the subcontracter's employees who continue to work in the same workplace even if the subcontractor has changed shall be calculated considering the working period of the employees in the same workplace. Thus, the right of annual paid leave of the employees shall be reserved even if the subcontractor has changed.

The amendments in the Occupational Health and Safety Act numbered 6331 by the law no. 6552

1. "International navigations of the maritime transport vehicles" are excluded from the scope of the Code numbered 6331.

2. The Code numbered 6331 used to stipulate that an employer shall appoint an occupational health expert, an occupational physician and other health personnel. However, according to the New Law, the other health personnel shall only be appointed in the establishments where ten or more employers are employed and which are classified as very hazardous.

3. In work places that employ less than ten employees and that are in the category of less hazardous, the employer and the representative of the employer may conduct occupational health and safety services provided that they conclude the trainings given by the Ministry even though they do not have the qualifications and document required by the Law.

4. The New Law sets forth the provisions with regards to the health certificate which is required to be obtained by the employees to be employed in hazardous and very hazardous works. Accordingly, regardless of the conditions of the establishments, those who are going to be employed for the works which are classified as hazardous or very hazardous, must receive a health certificate. The health certificate which is required to be obtained in accordance with the law, may be obtained from the occupational physician and, for the work places that employ less than ten employees and which are classified as less hazardous, may be obtained from the public utilities or family physician.

The amendment in the Article 112 of Labor Law by the law no. 6552 regarding "the severance pay of the employees employed in public institutions or corporations"

The public institutions or corporations shall be responsible for the severance pay of subcontractor's employees who work within the scope of service procurement tender of the public institutions. The severance pay of subcontractor's employees who work in the workplace of the public institutions or corporations shall be secured with this amendment. This amendment is only related to the service procurement tender and the subcontractor's employees who work in other tender works are excluded.

The amendments in the Labor Law, Mining Law, Social Security and General Health Insurance Law by the law no. 6552 regarding the employees who work in mines, underground works.

1. An employer can only terminate an employment contract of an employee with an indefinite duration who has worked for a period of at least 6 months, in the existence of a valid reason, within an establishment which employs 30 or more employees. The New Law introduces an exception to this provision and states that the employees who are employed in underground work will be considered within the scope of job security even though they have not worked for six months.

2. The underground mining employees shall not be asked to work overtime with an exception of urgent and extraordinary circumstances. Pursuant to the regulation, the maximum working hours of underground mining employees shall not extend beyond 36 hours per week and 6 hours per day. Under the said urgent or extraordinary circumstances, the hourly payment for every hour exceeding 36 hours shall not be less than one hundred per cent of the normal hourly payment.

3. Underground workers shall have four additional days added to their paid annual leave calculated in accordance with 4th paragraph of the Article 53 of Labor Law.

4. Moreover, pursuant to the regulation added to the Mining Law, the minimum wage paid to the underground workers who work at the underground mining workplaces shall not be less than twice as much of the minimum wage determined under Article 39 of the Labor Law.

5. Pursuant to the regulation added to the Social Security and General Health Insurance Law, the age of retirement is decreased to 50 years for the insured employee who has worked at the mining workplaces determined by the Ministry for 20 years.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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İzzet Gürler
Özlem Kurt
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