Clarification about time off to vote during the election

Published on: Jan 07, 2020
Every election we receive questions from employers with regards to giving employees time off to vote. There are many misconceptions surrounding this issue. The law stipulates the following.

Based on article 44 of the Voting Ordinance eligible voters can cast their vote between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., so in total a period of twelve (12) hours.

Based on article 45 of the Voting Ordinance, an employer is obligated to ensure that its employees can cast their vote, but only insofar the casting of the vote is not possible outside of working hours and provided that the employee will not be absent for more than two (2) hours.

The above means that an employee who works a “regular” eight hour shift, such an employee is in principle not entitled to any time off, since the employee can cast his/her vote outside of working hours.

Please note that in a Collective Labor Agreement, handbook or in the individual employment agreement deviations in favor of the employee may have been agreed upon.