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Portugal Makes It Illegal For Your Boss To Message You After Work Hours

Stewart Perrie

Published 

Portugal Makes It Illegal For Your Boss To Message You After Work Hours

People working from home in Portugal have been given a massive win in work-related mental health after the government passed a rule that bans bosses from messaging staff after hours.

There's nothing worse than clocking off from a day and while you're decompressing you get an email or text alerting you to something that needs to be done tomorrow.

Well, Portugal's ruling Socialist Party has approved legislation that will make sure this is a thing of the past for people working from home.

Under the new labour laws, employers could face penalties if they contact their staff after they have finished for the day or before they start.

The rule won't apply to companies that have fewer than 10 employees.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

Bosses will also be banned from monitoring their minions while they work away from the office.

While the coronavirus pandemic saw many industries engage in remote working, it sparked the question of how employers were able to ensure work was being done.

Some companies made you move your mouse every few minutes to prove you were still online or you had to check in with your boss every few hours.

However, the new rules in Portugal will forbid this.

Portugal's Minister of Labour and Social Security, Ana Mendes Godinho, a conference in Lisbon they want to make remote working as easy as possible.

"The pandemic has accelerated the need to regulate what needs to be regulated," she said. "Telework can be a 'game changer' if we profit from the advantages and reduce the disadvantages.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

"We consider Portugal one of the best places in the world for these digital nomads and remote workers to choose to live in, we want to attract them to Portugal."

Portuguese politicians voted against allowing workers the right to switch off work messages and have instead put the onus on bosses only contacting them in times of emergency.

In addition to these rules, people working from home will be able to expense things like electricity and internet.

Employers will be able to write these charges off as business expenses to accomodate remote working.

Staff with young children will also have the right to work from home without having to prearrange it with their boss, which is a massive win for those who might not be able to afford childcare.

That rule will finish for parents once their child turns eight years old.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News

Stewart Perrie
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