Portugal: Home office law prohibits boss messages after work

E-mails from the office in the evening, the boss calls on the weekend …

A new home office law in Portugal aims to protect workers who do their job at home.

The government is responding to the trend that more and more employees are working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. The advantages of working from home would thus be recognized, but labor law would have to be adapted to this situation.

What will change for the Portuguese?

  • In fact, the new regulations even include penalties for companies who violate the privacy of employees or their families. Companies should therefore avoid contacting their employees outside of office hours – unless there are exceptional circumstances.
  • In addition, employers are required to compensate employees for work-related expenses incurred at home. Among other things, additional electricity or internet costs are to be paid.
  • Companies that fail to comply with the regulations face fines.
  • Employees should meet their superiors at least every two months in order to prevent employees from becoming isolated.

A regulation that would have given employees the right to switch off professional communication systems in their free time did not make it into the law.


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