The reform of unemployment insurance was the subject of a first decree in 2019 on the methods of calculating unemployment benefit, partly canceled by the Council of State. Following a new decree of March 30, 2021, the unions seized the interim judge with a request to suspend the text.
In its order of 22 June 2021(new window), the Council of State, suspends the entry into force, scheduled for July 1, 2021, of the new rules for calculating unemployment benefit.
This is why the decree of June 29, 2021 on the unemployment insurance scheme(new window)maintains, until September 30, 2021, the application of the provisions of the unemployment insurance agreement of April 14, 2017 concerning the calculation of the duration of compensation, of the reference daily salary(new window)and deferred compensation. As for the provisions suspended by the summary proceedings judge of the Council of State, they will come into force on a date set later by another decree.
Suspension of the new rules for calculating the allowance
The decision of the Council of State, rendered urgently, does not call into question the principle of the reform and the new rules for calculating unemployment benefit. Only the date of application of the decree of March 30, 2021 is suspended. (new window) which provided for the application of this new calculation method from July 1, 2021.
With this reform, the government intends in particular to reduce the precariousness generated by short-term contracts, the reform providing for modifying unemployment compensation for employees alternating periods of employment and periods of inactivity.
Another measure: a bonus-malus system on unemployment contributions due by employers, to encourage them to offer long contracts.
However, the summary judge doubts that the times are favorable for lasting contracts. The Council considers “serious the dispute relating to the manifest error of assessment” in relation to the current economic context.
Uncertainties about the economic situation
The Council of State points to the “many uncertainties” on the evolution of the health crisis and its consequences on companies that resort to short contracts (hotels and restaurants, in particular).
The decision notes the absence “of sufficient elements to allow the conclusion that the conditions of the labor market are (…) met to achieve the objective of general interest pursued.” However, these new rules “will penalize significantly the employees of these sectors who suffer more than they choose the alternation between periods of work and periods of inactivity”, warns the judge.
Finally, the Council of State recalls that it will also have to rule in a few months on the ” substance ” of the decree reforming unemployment insurance.