The lawyer's column

14.09.2020 | News


Can I keep my benefits in kind, i.e. a company-owned apartment, a company car and a company telephone, when I am laid off?

Benefits in kind such as car and telephone benefits are part of the salary. During the lay-off period, the employer has no obligation to pay salaries, nor, accordingly, an obligation to maintain benefits in kind. However, the preservation and use of benefits in kind may be agreed. If no salary is paid during the lay-off period, the withholding tax on the benefit or benefits in kind is transferred to the salary payment, when the salary is paid again. If the lay-off continues until the end of the calendar year, back taxes will be levied on the benefits in kind. One option is for the employee to pay the employer at least a compensation equal to the tax value, in which case there is no taxable benefit in kind.

The Employment Contracts Act has its own provisions on housing benefits. The employee has the right to use the dwelling also during the lay-off period. However, the employer may charge a fee for housing from the beginning of the second full calendar month following the end of the wage payment obligation. The employee must be notified of the collection of the compensation no later than one month before the start of the payment obligation.

Jaana Liimatainen, YTY Labour Market Lawyer

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