SWEDEN: Annual Update – Expected labour law changes in 2016

Working environment

New working environment rules: The Work Environment Agency has issued new regulations, which seek to prevent work related ill health among employees. The regulations require employers to prevent (among other things): workplace bullying; stress due to excessive workloads; and lack of leadership. The regulations also require employers to ensure that managers and supervisors know how to prevent work environment hazards, by, for example, arranging training for them.

The regulations will be effective as of March 31, 2016.
Action required:
(1) Review policies on the working environment and update them where necessary.
(2) Ensure managers and supervisors possess the relevant knowledge and take such other measures as the regulations may require.

Fixed-term employment contracts

Expected changes to fixed term contract rules: The Swedish parliament has passed a new law regarding fixed term employment. The new rules will come into effect on May 1, 2016.
Currently, employees on fixed-term agreements (and temporary substitute agreements) are automatically made permanent when the total period of employment exceeds two years (calculated over a five year period).
The new law puts in place anti-avoidance rules, which will stop employers from using different types of contract to avoid permanent employment status.
Action required: Understand the new rules and anticipate any change to hiring arrangements that may be needed.

Social security contributions

Increasing social security contributions for younger workers: The social security contributions for employees under the age of 26 are being gradually increased to the standard level of 31.42% (previously 15.49%). The social security contributions for this age group currently amount to 25.46%, and we expect the full increased amount of 31.42% to be in place by 1 June 2016. This date could change.
Action required: Check that payroll is aware of the changes.