The main measure in this new Government Emergency Ordinance (GEO) disallows foreclosure proceedings against technical unemployment benefits and the monthly allowance granted to other professionals, as set out in GEO no. 30/2020.
Another measure adds lawyers affected by a reduction in income to the category of professional beneficiaries of the monthly allowance equal to 75% of the average gross salary.
The legislation adopted
In the Official Journal of Romania no.325 of 21 April 2020, Government Emergency Ordinance (GEO) no.53/2020 was published to amend some legislation on social protection measures determined by the spread of the Covid 19 virus.
Seizure of allowances granted during the state of emergency is not allowed
The Ordinance states that indemnities granted according to GEO no.30/2020 to employees, other professionals (as regulated by art. 3 paragraph (2) of the Civil Code- Law 287/2009), athletes, lawyers, as well as individuals who obtain income from copyright and related rights, are not subject to foreclosure involving seizure of funds at the time they are granted, nor in the 60 days following the date of cessation of the state of emergency, regardless of the budget from which these are paid.
We consider it important that, from the date of entry into force of this ordinance, all foreclosure proceedings against technical unemployment benefits granted to employees will be suspended, regardless of whether these benefits are paid by the state budget or the employer's own funds.
Measures relating to the allowance granted to lawyers
Lawyers whose activity is reduced due to the effects of the Covid 19 virus, during the state of emergency, can benefit from a monthly allowance equal to 75% of the average gross salary provided by the Law on the State Social Insurance Budget (no.6/2020), if throughout the month for which they request the allowance, they had earnings at least 25% lower than the monthly average for 2019, but which do not exceed the average gross salary as provided by Law no.6/2020 (i.e. 5.429 lei).
Income tax, social insurance contributions and health insurance contributions are payable on this allowance, at the rates set out in the Fiscal Code (Law 227/2015, as amended), but no work insurance contribution is due.
Other measures brought by GEO 53/2020
The tax and social contributions related to the allowance received from the state budget by other professionals (regulated by art. 3 paragraph (2) of the Civil Code), lawyers, as well as individuals who obtain income from copyright and related rights, should be calculated by the beneficiary individuals, declared in the Single Declaration of income for 2020 and paid by the relevant deadlines.
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