General Directorate of Occupational Health and Safety of the Ministry of Labor and Social Security

Turkey

Summary

In a letter sent by the General Directorate of Occupational Health and Safety of the Ministry of Labor and Social Security (the “Ministry”) to the Turkish Confederation of Employer Associations on 19 January 2022 (“Letter”), it was clarified that the costs of PCR tests performed on employees for work related purposes should be covered by the employers.

Background

The Occupational Health and Safety Law No. 6331 (“Law”) states that it is the employer's responsibility to take all kinds of measures regarding occupational health and safety in the workplace, to provide necessary tools and equipment, to adapt health and safety measures to changing conditions, monitor the measures taken, and make a risk assessment.

Furthermore, according to the Law, expenses related to the said health and safety measures must be assumed by the employers and may not be reflected onto the employees.

Accordingly, whether the obligation mentioned above to cover the costs for health and safety matters also included an obligation to assume the costs for PCR tests was unclear under Turkish legal practice.

Based on the Letter, it should now be clear that the employers are obligated to cover the costs for PCR tests as well, to the extent that these tests are requested by such employers.

The Letter also states that the test results could be recorded in order to take necessary actions.

For more details on the COVID-19 measures and employment matters in Turkey, contact your CMS client partner or local CMS expert: Dr. Döne Yalçın or Sinan Abra.