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New social and economic council in France

The Macron statute of 22 September 2017 has created a new employee representative body (social and economic council), by merging the preexisting employee representatives’ bodies (works council, health and safety council, staff delegates).

Companies having at least 11 employees will have to implement a social and economic council. The roles and responsibilities of the old bodies are for the most part preserved. For companies of:

  • Less than 50 employees, the social and economic council’s responsibilities will be similar to those performed by the staff delegates;
  • More than 50 employees, the social and economic council’s responsibilities will encompass those previously performed by the works council, health and safety council, and staff delegates.

The Group council, the European works council and the European company council are not affected by the reform.

Four transitional periods are anticipated. The social and economic council will necessarily have to be implemented for the 1st of January 2020 at the latest.

End of the mandates Transitional measure
Pre-electoral protocol established before the 23 September 2017 The elections will take place in accordance with the rules applicable at the date where the protocol was established. The social and economic council must be implemented at the latest on the 1st of January 2020.
From the 23 September 2017 to the 31st of December 2017 Automatic extension until the 31st of December 2017. Possibility to extend the mandates for a maximum of one year
From the 1st of January 2018 o the 31st of December 2018 Possibility to reduce or extend the mandates for a maximum of one year
From the 1st of January 2019 to the 31st of December 2019 The social and economic council must be implemented at the end of the mandates, at the latest on the 1st of January 2020

The reference period used to calculate the workforce threshold has been changed. The threshold used to be considered reached if crossed during a total of 12 months consecutive or not throughout the last three years. The threshold is now calculated over a period of 12 consecutive months only.

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