New redundancy rules enter into force

From this Thursday, December 1, article 67 of the El Khomri law comes into force. Its final objective is to facilitate hiring on permanent contracts.

It is one of the flagship measures, and among the most controversial, of. the reasons justifying a. Objective stated, “to secure” these dismissals in the face of the industrial tribunal, who can condemn a company to damages if it considers the breach of the employment contract “without real and serious cause”. Ultimately, the aim would be to facilitate hiring on permanent contracts.

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Thus, two reasons, hitherto recognized by case law, are now set in stone: the reorganization of the company necessary to safeguard its competitiveness and the cessation of activity. To this must be added the difficulties linked to a “significant drop in orders or turnover” compared to the same period last year. A redundancy is valid when there is a quarter of decline for companies with less than 11 employees, two consecutive quarters for those under 50, and four quarters with more than 300 employees,

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The bosses rejoice

This measure is welcomed by small bosses. “There will now be an indisputable element by the judge who will be able to secure the possible dismissal”, explains to AFP Jean-Michel Pottier, in charge of social affairs at the CGPME. “The bosses of TPE-PME are looking for all means not to hire, for fear of being stuck in the event of a downturn.”

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For their part, the big companies seem less impatient. “HRDs are not waiting for their finger on the trigger, this reform only confirms an already severe case law,” said Sylvain Niel, lawyer at Fidal, who advises several large groups. Medef, meanwhile, regrets that the government has given up changing the scope of assessment of difficulties, which would have made it possible to assess them at company level and no longer at group level.

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For employees, on the other hand, this measure is not viewed favorably. “The law will naturally facilitate redundancies since it fixes cases in which they will be” automatically “considered justified, with regard to accounting indicators on which many employers can easily play”, worries Judith Krivine, lawyer at Dellien associates. For Maître Étienne Colin, there is a risk of witnessing an upsurge in layoffs “especially in small businesses which in recent years have preferred to resort to conventional terminations”.