New legislative changes. Stress and physical exhaustion fall under moral harassment

Law no. 167/2020 (“the Law”) amending and supplementing Ordinance no. 137/2000 regarding the prevention and sanctioning of all forms of discrimination and also supplementing Article 6 of Law 202/2002 on equal opportunities and treatment between women and men was published on 7 August 2020 in the Romanian Official Gazette no. 713.

The Law regulates, amongst others, the situations which are circumscribed to the concept of moral harassment.

A specific legal provision which could generate much controversy and court proceedings is the fact that stress and physical exhaustion can now be considered forms of moral harassment as stated under Article 2 para 5 (2) which says “According to this law, stress and physical exhaustion fall under moral harassment’’.

It is important to note that according to Article 2 para. 5 (1) of the Law “moral harassmentis disciplinarily, contraventional and criminally sanctioned”. The fine provided by law is between RON 10,000 and RON 15,000. In cases of non-observance of the provisions on moral harassment, the courts can oblige employers, amongst others, to pay moral damages or to cover expenses for psychological counselling.

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