Lawfulness of Dismissal When Employee Refuses to Perform Inferior Tasks

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

On January 16, 2018, the Supreme Court clarified when an employee’s refusal to perform tasks which are not included in his job position is lawful, holding that the refusal is lawful as long as it “is characterized by good faith and is proportionate to the employer’s unlawful conduct.” Therefore, it must be considered as “lawful the dismissal of the employee being assigned to inferior tasks who takes time off work right after serving an injunction on the employer. The total refusal of the performance, indeed, can be justified only if the Company’s non-fulfillment/breach (of obligations) is absolute. Therefore, where the employer fulfills its other duties, such as payment of salary, social security coverage, and insurance, there is no space for the application of Article 1460 of the civil code (legitimate refusal of performance).”

Teleworker’s Domicile Forms Basis for Court Jurisdiction

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

The Supreme Court stated that, with regard to working activities carried out via teleworking, an employee challenging a dismissal must file his or her claim in the Court that has jurisdiction over the employee’s domicile, and not where the company is based. The Court noted that, to identify the local jurisdiction, it is sufficient that the employer arranges for the assets and working tools to be based in the employee’s place of residence, even when their premises are owned by others or by the worker him/herself.

Dismissal Based on Employee E-Mails

Precedential Decision by Judiciary or Regulatory Agency

On March 8, 2018, the Supreme Court ruled a dismissal is unlawful if based on messages contained in business mail, since they cannot be attributed with certainty to the “apparent” author. Here, the employer based the dismissal for gross misconduct on “questionable” e-mails, as well as on statements provided by persons directly involved and, therefore, unreliable. The Court noted that only the certified e-mail or the digital signature guarantees the integrity of the document; whilst personal e-mail could be easily modified.

Collective Bargaining – Confindustria, Cgil, Cisl and Uil

Trend

Confindustria (employer’s main union) and Cgil, Cisl and Uil (employee’s main unions) recently reached an agreement on a new model of industrial relationships, confirming two levels of negotiation and bargaining: the national and the local (or at company level), and indicating the criteria for calculating wage increases. It also introduces the criteria to measure a company’s representativeness. The agreement, which has not yet formalized, was undersigned on March 9, 2018, and shared with the three trade unions’ organizations.