The adverse coronavirus situation continues to affect companies in an unprecedented way. As more and more companies suspend their operations and close their workplaces, we are working hard to help you in these difficult times by keeping you up to date on the latest developments which affect the employers and employees alike.
The Ministry of the Economy has prepared a set of measures designed to alleviate the economic impacts of the pandemics, which the Slovak Government acknowledged on 18 March 2020. The objective of these measures is to support the financial condition, liquidity and cash flow of companies and their employees in order to prevent the business sector from collapsing.
Immediate measures which should be applicable to both the employers and employees:
- The deadline for the filing of tax returns for legal entities and natural persons has been extended to 30 June 2020 based on the taxpayer’s notice, also for those who filed within the original deadline;
- The deadline for the income tax payment for all taxpayers has been extended to 30.6.2020 and the application for extension will be exempted from administrative fees;
- The deadline for the filing of VAT returns and VAT payment will be extended based on the taxpayer’s notice of deferral;
- The payment of all mandatory social and health insurance contributions for the period from March 2020 to June 2020 has been suspended for legal entities and the self-employed. The thus unpaid contributions will be spread over and payable within 18 months, from July 2020 to December 2021 at the latest;
- Full exemption of wages paid to employees from the mandatory social and health insurance contributions and from income tax for those employers who cannot assign work to their employees because of the mandatory lockdown of their operations ordered as part of the preventive quarantine measures or because of the decline in orders as a direct consequence of such measures.
Measures requiring legislative amendments:
- Changes in care for a family member – according to the proposal, one parent will be able to stay with their child at home on a special sick leave, receiving an allowance at 80% of his/her average wage; the allowance will be paid from Day 1 by the Social Insurance Agency. If a child has only one parent (or if both parents are healthcare workers or employees who cannot leave their workplace), the state will provide a monthly child-care voucher, which can only be used for this specific purpose;
- Introduction of the so-called “quarantine leave” – a person subject to quarantine will receive ‘sickness’ benefits from the Social Insurance Agency from Day 1;
- Simplified conditions and criteria for the granting of the 'job retention contribution'
Measures focusing on prevention and process systems for companies/employers:
- The websites for entrepreneurs and companies will have signposts with links and documents informing companies what to do in their production processes in connection with the measures issued by the government’s crisis management team and in connection with the spread of coronavirus, including manuals;
- Ensure accelerated testing of employees for coronavirus in companies of strategic importance to the state (logistics, supplies, etc.) to avoid situations where quarantine measures would lead to excessive workforce outages, collapse of companies, compromise the security of supplies or safety of manufacturing processes in strategic companies;
- Create a database of individuals who travelled abroad and may be coronavirus positive and give strategic employers access to such database;
- Set up an automated CHATBOT (computer application) to all measures for entrepreneurs and make it operational on all relevant websites.
We will keep a close eye on how these measures develop and are implemented and we will keep you informed of any new developments as they unfold.
It should be noted that if you have an employee who thinks he/she might be coronavirus positive (regardless of whether he/she has returned from a high-risk area or shows symptoms of a disease), such an employee does not have to provide you, as the employer, with medical confirmation of sickness; it will be sent to you directly by the Social Insurance Agency. However, the employee must still inform you on his/her temporary incapacity for work.
We are monitoring the impacts of this emergency situation on the employers, so stay tuned. We’ll be glad to answer any questions you might have.