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Employment law

Digitalising employment relations

Employment law is one of the most conservative areas of Russian law. Even in this area, however, innovation-driven approaches are possible. At PwC Legal, we find optimal solutions for employers and help make it easier for them to introduce work-from-home initiatives and implement electronic document flow and other innovative products to enhance employee performance.

Long-term incentive plans

PwC Legal has vast practical experience in designing long-term incentive plans for both executive and regular staff. In recent years, we have successfully implemented dozens of such projects in Russian and foreign legal environments.

Employment disputes

Employment disputes are not merely time-consuming. They also entail financial and reputational risks for employers and may trigger a domino effect whereby other employees--encouraged by their colleagues’ success--also file suits against their employers. Our team has successfully handled pre-court and in-court settlements involving labour disputes.

Reducing staff costs

Reducing staff costs is often associated exclusively with cutting staff. Our experience shows that headcount reductions may not necessarily help to reduce staff costs. We have accumulated extensive experience and gained insights in all aspects of employment relations and would be happy to offer you support not only in terminating employment contracts but also in pursuing other options that may be less expensive and emotionally charged. These services will be useful not only for companies in critical moments but for all companies with responsible, forward-thinking management who care about developing their business further.

Employment aspects of reorganising a business

Apart from the general rules stipulated by the Russian Labour Code, business reorganisations are left largely unregulated in Russian employment law (for example, the status of internal company policies following a reorganisation or the unification of payroll and corporate benefits systems).

We would be pleased to help you resolve any issues related to reorganising your business.


Employment aspects of M&A deals

Generally, shareholder turnover in a company does not constitute grounds for terminating contracts with employees.

However, despite the apparent simplicity of this procedure, employers must verify many things, like whether the company’s employment contracts contain provisions that certain payments must be made if the control structure should change.

We would be happy to help you verify these matters to help you successfully close your deals.

Employment relations with management personnel

Given management’s key role in an organisation’s success, structuring employment relations with them can often be decisive in ensuring smooth onboarding and value generation. For instance, properly describing and documenting management’s key functions, payments and benefits will help avoid unnecessary discussions that could negatively affect performance.

We would be happy to share practical insights that we have successfully applied in similar client projects.

Judicial and out-of-court settlement of individual and collective labour disputes

We would be happy to provide pre-trial and litigation support to settle individual or collective labour disputes on any employment issues. Our lawyers have a solid record of success in settling labour disputes. In one case, we managed to nullify a ruling to reinstate an employee issued by a first-instance court in an appellate court.

Changing terms of employment

Employers often wish to change the terms and conditions of employment, but employees do not always agree with their proposals. We would be happy to help you understand how your company can implement these changes as well as what options are stipulated by the Russian Labour Code. In this area, we also help our clients structure their employee relations flexibly, so that they may be amended later with little impact.

Developing internal company policies

Internal company policies play an important role in employer-employee relations. In particular, they come in handy where disciplinary action has to be taken, including termination.

Furthermore, internal company policies must comply with Russian law to maximally protect the employer’s position in potential disputes.

We would be happy to help you draft your internal policies.

Consulting on the legal aspects of payroll and preparing documents on bonuses, warranties and compensation

We will gladly provide full support on proper documentation of salaries, bonuses, guarantees and benefits.

Consulting on terminating employment relations, supporting the termination of employment relations and conducting negotiations

Termination is the most complicated aspect of employment relations not only because the law heavily regulates this issue, but also because courts in different regions may hold contradictory opinions on the same issue. We would be happy to help you determine your options as well as implement your final decisions. In particular, we can provide full support in headcount cuts, from studying all the factors involved and preparing necessary documents and up to conducting negotiations with the employees scheduled for termination. We are also prepared to help you defend your interests in court should your employees seek to challenge your decisions.

Support during audits by regulators or in-court defence

Eventually, most organisations are audited by public authorities, including by the Labour Inspectorate. Information on scheduled audits is available from the Prosecutor General’s Office.

We help our clients to review HR documentation in advance of a public audit, provide support during the audit and, if necessary, litigation support based on the outcome.

Interacting with trade unions, including leading collective bargaining negotiations and developing strategies to settle collective employment disputes

Under current legislation, trade unions enjoy a rather wide range of rights that allow them to exert significant influence on employment relations. Employers that deal with trade unions must be aware of the scope of rights that the trade union has and in which specific cases the employer can reject its demands.

Given that trade unions play an growing role both within companies and in society at large, it has become increasingly important critical to understand the subtle details of trade union legislation.

We can help you resolve issues related to trade unions, including conducting collective bargaining and designing strategies aimed at resolving collective disputes.

Material liability

We support our clients in matters related to financial liability caused by employees. We will help you analyse the as-is damage caused by the employee and guide you through rules to take the appropriate actions.

Contact us

Gennady Odarich

Gennady Odarich

Managing Director PwC Legal, Business Set-up and Corporate Secretarial Services Practice Leader, PwC Russia

Tel: +7 (495) 232 5758

Alexei Dingin

Alexei Dingin

Senior Associate, Head of employment law practice, PwC Russia

Tel: +7 (495) 967 6031

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