Social News of the Week: Guide to Landmarks, Pregnancy, Telecommuting Costs

Discrimination and pregnancy

The rights advocate publishes guidance on pregnancy discrimination in the private sector. Its purpose is to help prevent such discrimination by informing those involved in the world of work and by providing legal tools.

In its guide, the Rights Defender details the evidence that victims of discrimination based on pregnancy must provide.

In civil cases, the employee presents factual elements leading to a presumption of discrimination. It should be a set of hints. Compile indicators of discrimination:

  • chronology of facts: connection between knowledge of pregnancy and deterioration in professional position;
  • the employer’s awareness of the employee’s pregnancy;
  • a professional assessment report stating that there is no non-compliance or professional misconduct and therefore that the termination of the contract is motivated by pregnancy;
  • refusal after the announcement of pregnancy from the planned promotion;
  • voice messages, text messages, etc.

In criminal cases discrimination is proved by the corpus delicti. The victim must prove the material element of the crime of discrimination (difference in treatment) as well as the moral element.

For more details, you can download the complete guide:

Attractions guide

Following the lifting of medical restrictions on March 14, the guidelines set out measures to prevent the risk of contracting Covid-19, replacing the healthcare protocol. In this document, the Department of Labor lists measures that companies must follow to protect the health of employees, as well as rules for handling contact cases, positive cases, and vulnerable workers. This includes reminding employees to:

  • hygiene measures;
  • rules for regular ventilation of premises;
  • preventing the risk of infection through hands.

Note that from March 21, 2022, at-risk contacts, regardless of their vaccination status, will no longer be required to self-isolate, but will be required to be tested for D + 2. They will have to continue:

  • apply barrier measures (wearing a mask indoors and outdoors when in contact with other people);
  • limit contact, especially with vulnerable people;
  • avoid contact with people at risk of severe form;
  • work remotely as much as possible.

Telecommuting costs

Last year, tax exemptions were introduced for professional expenses incurred in 2020 due to remote work. Given the continued widespread use of remote work in 2021, these measures have been reinstated.

Thus, the Ministry of Economy, Finance and Reconstruction announced an exemption from income tax. This applies to allowances paid by the employer solely to cover the costs associated with remote work. Operating expenses normally required for the exercise of a profession are not considered (for example, expenses for food or travel between home and place of work).

These allowances are exempt from income tax whether they take the form of allowances, lump-sum refunds or reimbursements of actual expenses. There are different exemption limits: 2.50 euros per day, 55 euros per month and 580 euros per year.

Last year, the established limits did not limit the amount of benefits that could be exempted. They simply allowed a presumption to be made of the use of allowances in accordance with their purpose. Thus, amounts in excess of these limits may be exempt from income tax upon presentation of supporting documents. It is logical that this year should also be so.

To ensure their exemption from taxes, the employer must indicate the appropriate amounts in the information that he sends to the tax authorities. Therefore, the amount of taxable income pre-filled on an employee’s tax return should not include these allowances.

Employees can verify this when reporting their 2021 income by checking pre-filled amounts against pay slips (or employer-issued annual tax return).

If the professional expenses incurred by employees in connection with remote work exceed the amount of the allowance paid, they should be able to declare the allowance and deduct their actual expenses.

The timing of the application of these measures, as well as details on the nature and extent of the deduction of expenses related to remote work, will be clarified shortly on the website impots.gouv.fr.

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