There are several duties that employers owe to employees under Cyprus employment law. The duties derive both from statute as well as the common law and they aim at securing the employee’s salary, safety and well being in the workplace. The duties owed by the employer are the following:
- Duty of the employer to pay wages
The primary duty of the employer is pay the employee wages/salary. This duty is self-explanatory as it is the main consideration provided by the employer in exchange for the services offered by the employee. This duty has been now codified by The Wage Protection Law (hereinafter “L. 35(I)/2007”).
L. 35(I)/2007 provides that the wages/salaries of the employee may be paid in cash, through bank transfer or through check or banker’s draft. Wages can be paid in kind provided that such payment is (1) customary in the specific sector or profession and (2) it is beneficial to the employee or his family, (3) the value of the goods provided is fair and reasonable and (4) in every case the employee consents to payment in kind.
If payment of the salary is made/effected in cash, then it must be made during working hours, at the place of employment (or near the place of employment) unless otherwise provided in any another law, regulation or collective agreement.
Section 9(1) of L. 35(I)/2007 states that the wages must be paid at least weekly, but in cases of an employee paid monthly, the wages must be paid monthly.
The salary must be paid directly to the employee except in cases where the employee has given his consent for the wage to be paid elsewhere.
No deductions are allowed from the wages unless authorized by any Law, Regulation, a Pension Fund, a Provident Fund, a Court Order or being set-off as damages caused to the employer purposively or by the gross negligence of the employee. Finally, deductions which are made with the consent of the employee are permissible. In all of these cases the deductions are limited to the point where the employee is left with a sufficient amount in order to cover his basic needs and those of his family.
In case the employer breaches the provisions of L. 35(I)/2007, section 20(1) states that the employer is liable to a fine or imprisonment or both.
- Duty of the employer to exercise reasonable care for the health and safety of employees
This duty is owed to the employees. The standard of care is “the care which an ordinary prudent employer would take in all the circumstances”.