Our interactive map shows the countries that have passed specific laws to guarantee employees the right to disconnect from work outside of work hours.

For those with 'teleworkable' jobs, remote work increased significantly during the pandemic. While the number of employees working remotely decreased again as restrictions were lifted, the numbers have not returned to pre-pandemic levels. As part of its analysis of findings published in 2022, Eurofound has predicted that advances in technology will combine with employer and employee preferences to ensure that rates of remote working continue to rise into the future.

While remote work can offer benefits to employees in terms of flexibility, autonomy and work-life balance, it also comes with risks of its own. One of these risks is that work bleeds into non-working time, increasing effective working time and bringing additional stress and other pressures. Thanks to technology that has become ubiquitous, employees can, at least in theory, be reached at any hour of the day or night.

In response to concerns like these, a number of countries have legislated to explicitly recognise and protect the right to 'disconnect' from work outside of work hours. Where this right has been introduced, different jurisdictions have adopted different legal strategies for its implementation and take different approaches to its enforcement. Some countries have been content to allow the topic to be addressed through existing legal frameworks governing working time and mandatory rest periods.

With the help of our experts from around the world, we have compiled an interactive map showing where the right to disconnect has been given express legal recognition. Click on a reporting jurisdiction to find out more.

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.