Legal Framework for Employment Agreements of Athletes and Sports Agent Contracts

New Legislation Enacted

Authors: Ricardo Grilo, Senior Associate & Gonçalo Machado Santos, Junior Associate — Garrigues Portugal S.P.L.

Law No. 54/2017, of July 14, 2017, establishes the legal framework for sportsmen and women's employment agreements, sports training agreements, and agent or broker's agreements. Key provisions of the new law set the maximum duration of the employment agreement to five seasons and the trial period is reduced from 30 to 15 days whenever the employment agreement does not last more than two seasons. Additionally, the new legal framework does not provide for reintegration of the employee in cases where the employer’s termination is considered to be unlawful. Lastly, the law prohibits the representation of underage athletes by sports representatives.

 

Extension of the Scope of Legal Proceedings

New Legislation Enacted

Authors: Ricardo Grilo, Senior Associate & Gonçalo Machado Santos, Junior Associate — Garrigues Portugal S.P.L.

Law No. 55/2017 of July 17, 2017, modifies the existing legal framework to recognize the existence of an employment relationship and combat false claims of self-employment and other forms of undeclared work. The amendment extends to all situations where the relationship between the person rendering the professional activity and the entity benefiting from it fall under the concept of an employment agreement. Except in some instances, in Portugal, employment agreements generally are valid and enforceable even in the absence of a written document.

 

Balanced Representation Between Genders in Executive and Supervisory Bodies of Public and Private Sectors

New Legislation Enacted

Authors: Ricardo Grilo, Senior Associate & Gonçalo Machado Santos, Junior Associate — Garrigues Portugal S.P.L.

Law No. 62/2017 of August 1, 2017, sets out that the ratio of men and women appointed to each executive and supervisory bodies of any public company should not fall under 33.3%. For listed companies, the ratio between genders appointed to those bodies should not be lower than 20% (as of January 2018) or 33.3% (as of January 2020). Also, these companies must create annual equality plans and publish them on their website, to achieve equal treatment and opportunities, mitigate discrimination, and foster reconciliation of personal, family and professional life.

Strengthening of the Legislative Framework to Prevent Harassment

New Legislation Enacted

Authors: Ricardo Grilo, Senior Associate & Gonçalo Machado Santos, Junior Associate — Garrigues Portugal S.P.L.

On October 1, 2017, Law No. 73/2017 (of August 16, 2017) became effective and amended the Portuguese Employment Code (as well as other related pieces of legislation) to implement new anti-harassment measures. The Law, among other things, requires companies with seven or more employees to adopt codes of good conduct to prevent and tackle potential harassment behaviors at work. Noncompliance constitutes a serious infraction, triggering penalties in variable amounts, depending on the company’s annual turnover and the employer’s degree of responsibility.

 

Incentives to Hire Young People for their First Job and Individuals Long Unemployed

New Order or Decree

Authors: Ricardo Grilo, Senior Associate & Gonçalo Machado Santos, Junior Associate — Garrigues Portugal S.P.L.

Decree-Law No. 72/2017 of June 21, 2017, defines the allocation of incentives concerning the hiring of young people seeking their first job and people on a long or very long-term unemployment status through a reduction or total exemption from payment of contributions to Social Security. Such incentives may comprise a temporary reduction of 50% of the employer’s contribution rate for a period of three or five years or a temporary exemption from the payment of the employer’s contribution rate for a period of three years. Unless otherwise prohibited, exemption or partial reduction from contributions may be combined with other incentives.