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Factsheet for measure PT-2023-18/3186 – measures in Portugal

Parents' right to telework and covered expenses for telework

Despesas adicionais do trabalhadores em teletrabalho e extensão dos direitos dos trabalhadores com filhos ao regime de teletrabalho

Country Portugal , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 01 May 2023
Context Digital Transformation
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Protection of workers, adaptation of workplace
– Teleworking arrangements, remote working
Author Maria da Paz Campos Lima (CESIS) and Eurofound.
Measure added 01 June 2023 (updated 17 July 2023)

Background information

The Law No. 13/2023 of 3 April (with Rectification 13/2023 of 29 May) amended the Labour Code and related legislation within the framework of the Decent Work Agenda.

Among the wide range of new measures provided by this amendment (Público, 1 May 2023), there are two new measures concerning the telework legal regime defined by the Labour Code. The new measures ensures workers' right to telework (article 166) and provides for additional financial support for workers to afford computer equipment, systems and other technologies necessary for teleworking (article 168).

These two reformed measures reflect the debate around the Decent Work Agenda and the experience following the entry in force of Law 83/2021 of 6 December, which amended the Labour Code provisions on telework.

Content of measure

Law No. 13/2023 is an amendment to article no. 166 of the Labour Code. This measure provides the right to telework for workers with children under age 3, or with children who have disabilities, chronic illness or oncologic disease, regardless of age. The right to telework is guaranteed as long as the job can effectively be performed at home and the employer has the resources to support telework infrastructure.

The amendment specifies that the individual employment contract and the collective agreement must define the amount of compensation that the worker receives for additional expenses incurred from telework. The measure also stipulates that when no agreement can be reached between parties on a fixed amount for additional expenses, the amount is defaulted to the cost of the acquisition of goods or services that the worker did not have before signing the telework agreement, which is then compared to the expenditure of the worker in the last month of on-site work.

The compensation provided for these additional expenses will be a tax burden on the employer and will not impact the worker's income.

Use of measure

The Labour Relations Center (CRL) analysed the change in the content of collective bargaining. In 2022, analysis reflected an increase in the amount of attention that telework received in collective bargaining. In fact, 27 collective agreements out of the 240 collective agreements signed in 2022 covered telework. In contrast, only six agreements with references to telework were signed in 2021. Of these 27 collective agreements that address telework, only 10 cover specific issues within telework such as the payment of expenses, support for equipment, and meal subsidies (CRL, 2023; Expresso, 3 June 2023).

These changes may be a result of previous legislation on telework, such as Law 83/2021 of 6 December.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Employees in standard employment
Parents in employment
Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Trade unions
Employers' organisations

Social partners

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

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Consulted Consulted
Form Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies

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

  • Social partners jointly
  • Main level of involvement: Peak or cross-sectoral level


The process of discussion of the Decent Work Agenda package initiated by the PS minority government in 2021 was interrupted by the general elections. This process continued in 2022 with the PS majority government culminating on 10 February 2023 with the approval by the Portuguese parliament of the Decent Work Agenda, which came into force on 1 May 2023 (Law 13/2023 of 3 April).

During 2021, various meetings of the Permanent Commission of Social Concentration (CPCS) consulted social partners about the Green Paper on the Future of Work and about the first draft of the Decent Work Agenda. These meetings showed significant differences in opinion among social partners.

In 2022, the formal rounds of consultation at the CPCS preceding the legislative process did not lead to a tripartite agreement. This occurred due to the significant differences in opinion between the government and social partners.

Following these rounds, the Decent Work Agenda in 2022 (BiIl 15/XV/I) was subjected to an intense debate and alterations at the parliament. This resulted in new measures being integrated by the Law 13/2023. These new measures include amendments to the provisions on telework set by articles no.166 and no.168 of Labour Code.

Views and reactions

Overall, the employer confederations expressed discontent about the content of various measures established by Law 13/2023 and complained about the lack of consultation of social partners in relation to some new measures/proposals. They specifically disliked new rules on payment of workers for additional expenses related to telework that emerged during the parliamentary discussion of BiIl 15/XV/I.

After the approval of the law in the parliament, the National Council of Employer Confederations (CNCP) assembled the four employer confederations, CIP, CCP, CAP and CTP, and the Portuguese Confederation of Construction and Real Estate (CPCI), to warn the President of the Republic of "several norms" that they "considered to be unconstitutional and others that will seriously harm the competitiveness and life of companies in the various economic sectors". After the President of the Republic promulgated the law, the CNCP expressed their "deep disappointment" with the decision (Expresso, 22 March 2023, Público, 14 April 2023).

The General Confederation of Portuguese Workers (CGTP) highlighted that despite some positive steps in specific issues, in general the legislation does not respond the problems of deregulating working hours, attacks on collective bargaining, and the violation of trade union rights and freedoms (CGTP, 14 February 2023).

In contrast, the General Union of Workers (UGT) views Law 13/2023 positively. They highlight their own contributions for improving this legislation. More specifically, this confederation welcome amendments to the telework regime related with the payment of workers additional expenses and the extension of the right to telework to parents with children with disabilities, chronic illness or cancer (UGT, 23 February 2023; 1 May 2023).

UGT stressed that companies have not been open to set an amount of covered telework expenses via collective bargaining and claimed the urgency of publishing the ordinance. The CGTP said that the law does not do enough to protect workers' rights to compensation, saying that other expenses should be considered and that additional payments to the workers should be tax exempt (Jornal de Negócios, 19 May 2023).


  • 02 June 2021: Livro Verde sobre o Futuro do Trabalho_Versão de Trabalho para Consulta Pública (
  • 06 December 2021: Lei n.º 83/2021 (
  • 14 February 2023: CGTP: Alterações à legislação laboral no âmbito da “Agenda para o Trabalho Digno” (
  • 23 February 2023: UGT: Resolução do Secretariado Nacional da UGT (
  • 22 March 2023: Expresso: Patrões manifestam profunda desilusão com a a promulgação das alterações à lei laboral (
  • 03 April 2023: Lei n.º 13/2023, Diário da República n.º 66/2023 (
  • 14 April 2023: Público: Patrões tentam convencer deputados a enviar lei laboral para o Tribunal Constitucional (
  • 01 May 2023: Público: Dezenas de alterações ao Código do Trabalho entram em vigor... (
  • 01 May 2023: UGT: Agenda do Trabalho Digno (
  • 19 May 2023: Jornal de Negócios: Ainda falta portaria para desbloquear pagamento das despesas do teletrabalho (
  • 27 May 2023: CRL: Relatório Anual sobre a Evolução da negociação coletiva em 2022 NEGOCIAÇÃO COLETIVA EM 2022 (
  • 29 May 2023: Declaração de Retificação n.º 13/2023, Diário da República n.º 103/2023 (
  • 02 June 2023: Expresso: Contratos coletivos com teletrabalho triplicam (
  • 06 June 2023: Código do trabalho - Lei n.º 7/2009 - Versão consolidada (6/6/2023) (


Eurofound (2023), Parents' right to telework and covered expenses for telework, measure PT-2023-18/3186 (measures in Portugal), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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