The Persons with Disability (Employment) Act, Chapter 210 of the Laws of Malta, provides the legal framework for the employment of persons with disability and for matters connected therewith.
Amongst other things, the Act provides that employers (being individual or body corporate) having in their employment more than 20 employees duly registered with Jobsplus are obliged to have and maintain a in their employment a 2% quota of persons with a disability and who are registered on the Register of Persons with Disability which is maintained by Jobsplus. Any employees who are related to the employer by consanguinity or affinity up to the third degree are to be excluded from the established number of 20 employees.
In computing the number of persons employed for the purposes of the above, a person registered as full-timer or a person whose employment ordinarily involves more than thirty (30) hours a week shall be counted as one person (unit) in employment, whereas a person whose employment is registered as part-time or reduced shall be counted as one-half (½) a “unit” (person). Should the total number of “units” amount to twenty (20) or more, hence the equivalent of 20 persons in employment, the 2% quota obligation would apply.
On estimating the quota, fractions of less than one-half or less are to be disregarded, fractions of one-half or more should be rounded up to the nearest whole number and an employee with severe disabilities, is to be considered as two.
Whereas the 2% employment quota obligation was waived by Jobsplus for the years 2019 to 2022, due to the onset and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, by the end of December 2023 employers are to ensure that the 2% employment quota is attained. In default, an annual financial contribution of €2,400 per disabled person, who should have been employed, becomes payable to Jobsplus, which will be issuing invoices in the first quarter of 2024. The contribution is capped at a maximum contribution of €10,000 per employer. The maximum contribution capping does not apply to a group of companies.
It is to be noted that various measures and incentives are in place for employers who employ persons who are registered on the Register of Persons with Disability.
The support measures available for those already in employment include:
(i) An exemption from the payment of the employer’s share of National Insurance Contribution in respect of such employees, hence effectively reducing the wage cost of such employees by 10% of their gross wage, and
(ii) A fiscal incentive payable to employers from national funds equivalent to 25% of the existing salary of such employees, up to a maximum of €4,500 each year.
The support measures available for the recruitment of persons registered on the Register of Persons with Disability include:
(i) An exemption from the payment of the employer’s share of National Insurance Contribution in respect of such employees, hence effectively reducing the wage cost of such employees by 10% of their gross wage (only the employer’s share is exempted, the employee still needs to pay the NI contribution), and
(ii) Access to Employment (A2E) Scheme, which provides to employers an employment aid of €166.40 per week for 156 weeks when recruiting, on full-time basis, persons registered on the Register of Persons with Disability. The subsidy will be pro-rated for part-time employment. The employee must then be retained in employment for 12 months following the end of the subsidy period.
The Lino Spiteri Foundation can assist in the recruitment process of a registered person with disability by ensuring that the right candidate is identified from the designated register.
It is to be kept in mind that in accordance with The Equal Opportunities (Persons with Disability) Act, Chapter 413 of the Laws of Malta, employers are prevented from discriminating against a person with disability in regard to (i) procedures relative to applications for employment; (ii) the hiring, promotion or dismissal of employees; (iii) employees’ compensation; (iv) job training; and (v) any other terms, conditions and privileges related to the employment of a persons with disability.
Disclaimer: This article is just for information purposes and is not intended to impart legal advice or to address the circumstances of any individual or entity. Readers are to seek professional advice before making any decision based on any matter referred to above.
How can we assist?
EMD offers a range of employment-related services to its clients. Our employment and labour law team is well versed in local employment law and practices and will be able to assist you throughout the procedure in attaining the quota at your workplace by preparing and submitting the necessary forms with the relevant authorities.
We can also assist in the following matters:
• negotiating, drafting and review of employment contracts, collective agreements, service agreements (in the case of self-employed clients), and transfer of employment contracts (in the case of mergers and acquisitions);
• the registration of employers and employees with Jobsplus and other authorities;
• applications for work permits, residence permits, PE numbers and for social security purposes.
• payroll and accounting services;
• the establishment of human resources related policies and procedures, including in respect of data protection and health and safety;
• regularly providing updates relative to employment law matters;
• advising and assisting in dispute resolution before the industrial tribunal and/or the Courts of Malta.
Please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org we will be happy to schedule a call or a meeting to assist you.