What’s new in terms of work-life balance?

The concept of work-life balance has changed a lot in recent years. Get up to date on your rights as a worker in this post.

News and trends

When you have been in the working world for a while, you begin to ask yourself certain questions, such as, for example, how to be successful in the professional and personal spheres so that neither of you is unbalanced. At the beginning of our professional career, the priority is to find our first job, but, when we already have some experience, we look at many other factors that will make us happy and satisfied workers or become workaholics. Would you like to know what work-life balance consists of? And, most importantly: How to carry it out to achieve balance? We inform you in this post!

What do companies and workers understand by work-life balance?

Let’s be realistic, when we are young and finish our studies, we want at all costs to sign the first contract, regardless of the conditions, and even accept long periods of unpaid internships in order to gain experience.

However, as the years go by, our knowledge and confidence increase thanks to experience and that is when we ask ourselves what will happen to our personal life if we want to continue being active professionally.

This is when the concept of family conciliation comes into play, but what exactly does it consist of? Human resources experts define it as the search for a balance between the responsibilities and demands that both family life and the company demand of people. This involves developing strategies that harmonize and manage the workload in relation to the schedule and time of the workday. Some of these measures that are already being implemented in all types of companies are: flexible hours, teleworking or maternity or paternity leave.

What does the Workers’ Statute say about family conciliation?

Family conciliation is key so that people do not have to choose between their private life and their careers, achieving a more egalitarian and competitive society. Currently, article 34.8 of the Workers’ Statute guarantees employees the possibility of requesting adjustments regarding the duration and schedule of their working day, as well as the way in which they carry out their work, even offering the option of teleworking. All this is done with the purpose of facilitating the balance between your family and work responsibilities.

On the other hand, in the last year, it is worth highlighting several of the new advances that have been made in terms of family conciliation, reflected in the BOE with Royal Decree Law 5/2023, of June 28, which responds to the new economic and social circumstances that have developed with events as influential as the pandemic or the war in Ukraine.

New Family Law 2023

This new law is based on several basic principles of the Spanish Constitution, included in Article 39, such as:  the social, economic and legal protection of families. Based on them, the following main points of the new Family Law are developed:

Right not to be discriminated against for the exercise of conciliation: Article 4.2 of the Workers’ Statute (ET) explicitly incorporates the employee’s right not to suffer discrimination based on gender, which includes treating women or men unfavorably. men due to their exercise of rights related to conciliation and co-responsibility between family life and work.

Parental leave: a new article 48 bis is introduced in the ET that provides that workers will have the right to parental leave to care for a child or foster minor for a period of more than one year, until the child turns eight years old. This permit will have a maximum duration of eight weeks, and may be distributed discontinuously.

Adaptation of the working day: the right to request adaptation of the working day (article 34.8 of the ET) is extended to workers who have care needs with respect to children over twelve years of age, spouse or de facto partner, family members by consanguinity up to the second degree, as well as other dependent persons.

News in paid leave:

  • 15 calendar days if formalized as a de facto couple.
  • 5-day leave in case of hospitalization of a family member or rest at home due to illness of the spouse or common-law partner.
  • The two-day paid leave is extended for the death of a spouse, or relatives up to the second degree of consanguinity or affinity for de facto couples.

New developments in the nullity of dismissal: the following are added as causes for nullity of dismissal: (i) the use of parental leave, (ii) the request for leave according to article 37.3.b) of the ET (due to a serious accident or illness of close relatives). or people who live with the worker), and (iii) when the employee has requested or is applying for an adaptation of his/her working day according to article 34.8 of the ET.

Transitional leave regime: the enjoyment of the leaves registered in articles 37.4, 37.6 and 46.3 of the ET will not terminate maternity or paternity leave.

Coincidence in the same company as the parents: their simultaneous exercise may be limited for compelling reasons and duly notified in writing, and in such case the company must offer an alternative plan.

New cases of reduction of working hours and leave to care for family members: for workers who need to care for family members, a reduction in working hours is contemplated

Who can request family conciliation?

If you are thinking about taking advantage of any of these measures, but you are not sure if you meet all the requirements, you should know that we can all use our rights when we need to and the appropriate circumstances arise.

Family conciliation is a right that both working men and women can request, with the aim of finding a balance between work and family responsibilities. This measure seeks to promote a more harmonious life, allowing workers to attend to their family obligations without negatively affecting their professional careers. Family conciliation is essential to build a more equitable work environment and facilitate a better quality of life for both employees and their families.

And that’s it for our post on the new measures for work-family conciliation. If you want to know more, do not hesitate to subscribe to Educa.Pro, we are waiting for you!

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