European Foundation
for the Improvement of
Living and Working Conditions

The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist
in the development of better social, employment and
work-related policies

COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level responses

Eurofound's COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the crisis, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for case FR-2020-13/217 – measures in France

Emergency measures relating to short-time working

Mesures d'urgence en matière d'activité partielle

Country France , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 27 March 2020
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Employment protection and retention
– Income support for people in employment (e.g. short-time work)
Author Frédéric Turlan (IRshare) and Eurofound
Case created 31 March 2020 (updated 20 May 2020)
Related ERM support instrument

Background information

Link to case FR-2020-10/462

An ordinance to enact “emergency measures” related to short-time working, which was published in France’s official journal on 28 March, temporarily modifies the rules on how certain employees (part-time workers, apprentices and individuals on professional training contracts) are compensated and opens up the system to groups that are normally excluded (public companies, individuals who work from home). It also modifies the rules for employees that do training during the short-time working period as well as short-time working in the case of protected employees (e.g. staff representatives).

Content of measure

The new ordinance guarantees partial time workers the same rights to minimum monthly remuneration as full-time employees. Apprentices and employees on a professional training contract will be compensated with 100% of their usual remuneration. Employees who during the period of short-time follow a training course are normally compensated by their employer with 100% of their remuneration. For training programmes agreed between employees and employers after the entry into force of this ordinance, employees will only receive 70% of their remuneration. When short-time working is applied for all employees at a company, establishment, department or workshop to which a protected employee is assigned or posted, the employer’s decision is binding on protected employees. As a result, until the end of the health crisis, the employer does not have to obtain the agreement of protected employees to put them on short-time working

Use of measure

Information not yet available.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Employees in standard employment
Other groups of workers
Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Company / Companies
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Consulted
Form Not applicable Direct consultation outside a formal body

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown



Views and reactions

The opinion of the CSE (Conseil social et economique) was required because employers will have to consult them within 2 months after the request for partial activity


  • 28 March 2020: Ordonnance n° 2020-346 du 27 mars 2020 portant mesures d'urgence en matière d'activité partielle (
  • 30 April 2020: Activite partielle - covid 19 - CPME (


Eurofound (2020), Emergency measures relating to short-time working, case FR-2020-13/217 (measures in France), COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,

Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process. All information is preliminary and subject to change.