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The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) recently released a new, simplified process for deducting home office expenses for the 2020 tax year, which will require employers to be prepared to work with those employees seeking to take advantage of the changes. The revisions, announced on December 15, were brought about by the dramatic impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on typical working life. For millions of Canadians, this is the first year in which they will be able to deduct certain expenses related to working from home. For the 2020 tax year only, employees who have worked from home for at least one month due to COVID-19 may deduct home office expenses using either the Temporary Flat-Rate Method or the New Detailed Method.

The Danish Government has called for its political parties to negotiate and enact laws to prevent and address sexual harassment in the workplace as it seeks to comply with the EU Whistleblower Directive that took effect on December 16, 2019. While the EU Directive requires Member States to enact national whistleblower protection laws by December 17, 2021, the government’s new initiatives include expanding the implementation of the EU Directive to include reports of sexual harassment in the workplace. 

Due to the rapid spread of a new strain of coronavirus in the UK, several countries have barred travelers from Britain. Germany, France, Italy, Canada, Israel, the Netherlands, and Belgium announced on Sunday, December 20 that they would suspend air travel from the UK. 

Japan has implemented new measures to allow foreign nationals with short-stay visas to obtain part-time work. It is estimated that approximately 21,000 individuals are eligible.

The UK government recently announced a new Job Support Scheme, which will replace the UK Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the “Furlough Scheme”) upon its expiration on October 31, 2020. The Furlough Scheme has been in place since March 2020 to help employers cover up to 80% of the wages for employees who would otherwise have been laid off, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. 

A UK employment tribunal has decisively expanded years of ambiguity surrounding the definition of “gender-reassignment” in the Equality Act to include non-binary gender identities.

After months of closed borders, China is beginning to reopen to certain travelers from Europe. While recreational travel is still prohibited, some European employers may now be able to send their people to China. Read on for a summary of what employers and travelers need to know about China’s reopening.

In a landmark ruling, a Beijing court ruled in favor of a transgender employee against her employer, a Chinese e-commerce company, interpreting China’s anti-discrimination laws to include protection based on sexual orientation and gender expression. This is the first time that a transgender employee has won a job discrimination case in China, paving the way for more similar cases to be brought in the future.

In June 2020, Hong Kong passed the Discrimination Legislation (Miscellaneous Amendments) Ordinance 2020 (“Amendment”), amending the Sex Discrimination Ordinance (SDO), the Race Discrimination Ordinance (RDO), the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO), and the Family Status Discrimination Ordinance (FSDO). Read more for a summary of the key changes and suggestions for employers.

In a major announcement on Thursday, July 9, the UK government outlined how the UK Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will conclude. Also, the government has announced two new initiatives to prevent future unemployment and bring furloughed employees back to work.

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