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Employment

Lydian’s Employment team brings together dedicated specialists in every aspect of employment law to provide you with the practical advice you need. No question is too complex for us.

Focus areas

Retaining and motivating employees is a key concern in any organisation, be it public or private. It is not only about creating the best working environment. Offering a tailored remuneration package in the most cost-efficient way is crucial in challenging times.

We advise on and help set up the full range of short and long-term incentive plans, "new age benefits" and other alternative remuneration tools. Our experience gives us a thorough understanding of the tax, corporate, employment and implementation issues surrounding such schemes or arrangements. Our proactive analysis of market practice means we can share real insight into, and an up-to-date knowledge of, current reward trends with our clients.

We deal with a wide range of disputes and dispute resolution processes.

We frequently deal with claims of constructive dismissal and claims for severance pay, and other claims arising from employment legislation such as unlawful deductions from wages, violation of working time restrictions and holiday pay. We also have experience in advising on complex discrimination cases. In addition to discrimination claims, we have substantial knowhow with respect to advising on collective claims arising out of redundancies and TUPE.

Employers have a legal duty to protect the employees’ health and safety at work.

Lydian devises codes of best practices for employers, enabling them to provide their employees with a safe working environment. We help companies to comply with health and safety regulations, assist them with drafting and implementing health policies (covering, for instance alcohol and drugs at work, stress, bullying, harassment) and advise them on health-related issues such as absenteeism, medical compliance, responsibility in case of damage/accidents, and the legal position of the so-called prevention counsellors. 

We provide support to external health services regarding the legal position of their prevention counsellors, responsibility in the event of damage/accidents, medical compliance, and screening of collaboration relationships with companies.

Human capital is one of the public sector’s main resources. Recruitment and effective management of the workforce is key to the success of any public body or agency.

We are a leader in public sector employment law on the Belgian market, combining in-depth knowledge of current practice with widely recognized academic skills and credentials.

We help local, regional and Federal government to draft, revise and negotiate their civil servants’ and contractual workers’ statutes and regulations.

We advise public employers on adapting the legal position of their workforce after decentralisation, restructuring, outsourcing or job pooling. Our range of legal HRM services covers all key areas and we help public bodies and agencies to apply HRM solutions in joint ventures, concession contracts, and PPP/PFI projects.

Our team has earned itself a solid reputation for handling the employment law aspects of company restructuring operations, including transfers of undertakings (TUPE), outsourcing, collective dismissals, business closures and restructurings under the Belgian Chapter 11-like proceedings.  We frequently coordinate European restructuring projects in several countries.

Our experts advise on:

  • drawing up and negotiating social plans;
  • drafting collective employment agreements;
  • all formalities relating to collective dismissal proceedings (notifications to the authorities and communication to employees’ representatives);
  • information and consultation with (Belgian and European) works councils, trade union delegations and health and safety at work committees
  • managing social conflicts;
  • early retirement arrangements.

International migration of highly skilled workers is on the rise. Some plan to settle permanently in the host country. Others migrate for shorter or longer finite periods, some frequently. Some are transferred within multinational companies, others for an international project. Finally, there are those who work in two, often neighbouring, countries at the same time (so-called split employment).

We advise on the whole range of international mobility issues, including:

  • all administrative formalities: work permits, visas and residence permits, Limosa declarations, A1 forms;
  • employment law, tax and social security issues;
  • comparative calculations; tax and social security optimisation;
  • drafting assignment letters, salary split agreements and expatriate policies;
  • terminating assignments.

Employment law is fast-changing. Meeting your obligations as an employer and recruiting, retaining and managing staff has never been more critical. Non-compliance with the diverse and complex rules an employer must respect can be expensive financially and reputationally.

Our specialist team guides you through all areas of employment law:

  • employment law aspects of corporate transactions - transfer of undertakings, redundancies and dismissals;
  • service agreements, employment contracts, work rules handbooks;
  • employment policies ranging from overall business conduct to policies on sexual harassment, bullying and violence at work;
  • boardroom disputes; severance claims;
  • employment litigation before employment tribunals;
  • collective issues; information obligations towards the (European) works council;
  • general employment issues, from remuneration schemes to general contractual issues.

Handling pension matters requires specific expertise in many areas of practice.

With a team of lawyers drawn from various specialist practice areas, you’re assured that your file is dealt with on a multi-disciplinary and integrated basis.

For you, however, there’s always a single point of contact, so that you stay firmly in control.

Discover more about our "Pensions" business area here

For a company to achieve excellent financial results, central management functions must run properly. Senior executives fulfill a central role within the organisation. Lydian helps companies retain key management personnel by devising cost-effective, motivating remuneration packages and by structuring their professional relationship with the employer.

Lydian’s team of specialists gives expert advice on:

  • streamlining management structures;
  • corporate governance rules;
  • directors’ and officers’ liability insurances;
  • drafting management agreements / contracts of employment;
  • the tax and social security status of directors, self-employed managers and employees;
  • the most effective remuneration tools to attract, retain and motivate managers / key personnel;
  • safeguarding the company’s knowhow;
  • exit strategy; if needed, dispute resolution support.

We have extensive experience in HR data protection and privacy issues at work and advise our clients on:

  • GDPR compliance in HR (data protection notices for staff and applicants, data subject requests, GDPR training for HR, data processing agreements with HR service providers, data protection impact assessments);
  • privacy issues in recruitment (background screening) and employment;
  • processing HR data (databases, software);
  • privacy related questions in inappropriate behaviour investigations of employees and disputes between employees and employers.

We help our clients to implement global data protection agreements and in drafting specific policies on acceptable use of IT, CCTV and other tracking systems or cyber surveillance (including BYOD, social media), and whistleblowing.

We act as your contact person in dealing with the data protection authorities (in case of inspection or inquiriesor data breach notification)

Lydian’s dedicated and multidisciplinary Internal Investigations Team advises global and local clients on all aspects of business crime and employee fraud, including:

  • Assistance with internal audit and investigation
  • Advising internal fraud prevention teams or external forensic experts on investigation measures and tools
  • Review of interview minutes and investigation reports
  • Disciplinary actions, including dismissal for gross misconduct
  • Handling liability claims
  • Recovery actions and litigation
  • Criminal complaints
  • Design of internal policies and corporate governance
  • Whistleblowing