Client Update – Green Pass for Employees
4 October 2021
Dear Clients and Colleagues,
Upon our return to routine from the High Holiday season, please find below a few updates regarding legal developments that may affect workplaces, in light of the continued spread of the Covid-19 virus.
- In our previous update (10.8.21) we surveyed the guidelines regarding entry to various places that operate under the “Green Pass” rules. Thereafter, the government approved new regulations – Special Authorities to Handle Covid-19 Regulations (Temporary Order) (Green Pass for employees), 2021 – which shall come into effect as of October 5, 2021.
The new Regulations followed Regulations published on August 31, 2021, which dealt with the application of the “Green Pass” on employees in educational institutions.
- The new Regulations state that employees employed in various workplaces will be required to present their “Green Pass” certification (confirming their being vaccinated or recovered from Covid-19).
Employees in such workplaces who do not have a “Green Pass” will be required to present a negative “immediate Covid-19 test” result, conducted within the previous 84 hours (as opposed to a PCR test).
In this context, please note that the Government has announced that as of October 3, 2021, the “Green Pass” certification will be granted to individuals who received their third dose of the vaccine, or who received the second dose less than six months previously (in addition to various rules regarding individuals who have recovered from Covid-19).
- According to the new Regulations, the workplaces in which employees are required to present their “Green Pass” certification, or a negative “immediate Covid-19 test” result, are primarily: medical institutions; welfare institutions; premises that host events; clubs and discos; gyms; studios and indoor pools; restaurants, bars and pubs; hotels; premises that host cultural and sporting events; museums and libraries; attractions, amusement parks, water parks and play-areas.
- Employers in these workplaces are obligated to inform their employees of their duty to present a “Green Pass” certification, or a negative “immediate Covid-19 test” result; and not to permit entry to employees who fail to do so. The above does not apply to employees whom the employer has determined are not in contact with patients, receivers of services or the clientele at the workplace.
- The Regulations only apply in workplaces outlines above. Employers not included within the above rules but who wish to examine applying a similar model, and the possible implications of such a regiment, are welcome to approach us for specific advice on the matter.
- In addition to the above regulations, the government has published an Amendment Memorandum to the National Insurance Law, whereby, an employee to whom the new regulations apply, whose employment is termination, or who resigned due to his/her refusal to get vaccinated or tested, will be entitled to unemployment payment, only after a period of 90 days. This is similar to the situation applicable to an employee who willfully resigns. In addition, an employer will not be regarded as having initiated a period of unpaid leave (for the purpose of receipt of unemployment benefits), when placing an employee on unpaid leave in such circumstances.
Furthermore, a Memorandum of the Severance Pay Law (Temporary Order), 2021 was published, suggesting to determine that the resignation of an employee who is required to present a “Green Pass” certification or a negative test result, and refuses to do so, shall not entitle the employee to severance pay according to law, and will not require provision of prior notice.
As noted, if and insofar as such amendments are made to the National Insurance Law or the Severance Pay Law (which is highly doubtful, as they are being objected by various parties in the Government and the Knesset), their application will only be with respect to employees who are lawfully required to present a “Green Pass” certification or a negative test result.
We will continue to provide you with updates of any developments.
The Labour and Employment Department
Herzog Fox & Neeman