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Last call for European cross-border telework 

On 1 January 2024 the EU Framework Agreement on cross-border telework finally entered into force in Italy.


Recognising the growing importance of cross-border telework during and after the Covid-19 pandemic, on 29 March 2023 the EU Administrative Commission approved a Framework Agreement on social security coordination. The Agreement provides an exception to the ordinary rules governing the application of social security legislation for cross-border telework, with the aim of allowing employees more flexibility to work remotely. 

The Framework Agreement entered into force on 1 July 2023 in the first group of countries that elected to sign it, while Italy signed it only at the end of December 2023, with an effective date of 1 January 2024.

The new rules

Under the new Framework Agreement, employees who work less than 50% of their total working time remotely in their country of residence (different from the country where the employer is located) may request an A1 form to maintain payment of social security contributions in the country of the employer. 

Both the country of the employer and the country of residence of the employee must be signatory States of the Framework Agreement for this rule to apply. 

‘Cross-border telework’ is defined as an activity which can be pursued from any location (and could be performed at the employer’s premises or place of business) and is based on information technology to remain connected to the employer’s working environment and stakeholders/clients in order to fulfil the employee’s tasks assigned by the employer or clients. 

In Italy, this definition would easily cover both what we refer to as ‘teleworking’ and ‘smart working’. 

Under the prior rules, if an employee spent more than 25% of their time working from their foreign residence, this would require a shift in applicable social security legislation from the country of the employer to the employee’s country of residence. The new rules thus allow employees to spend more time working in their home country. 

The transitional period

A1 forms issued under the Framework Agreement cannot cover a period prior to the Agreement’s entry into force in the respective country. 

Moreover, the Framework Agreement cannot cover a request concerning a period prior to the date on which the request was submitted, unless during this period social security contributions were paid into, or the employee was otherwise covered by, the social security scheme of the signatory State of the employer and: 

  • the requested period prior to the date on which the request was submitted does not exceed three months; or  
  • the request is submitted no later than 30 June 2024 and the period prior to the date on which the request was submitted does not exceed twelve months. 


Since the Framework Agreement did not enter into force in Italy until 1 January 2024, an Italian application can only cover a maximum prior period of six months (i.e. 1 January 2024 to 30 June 2024). However, there are several other countries in which the agreement entered into force on 1 July 2023 (Austria, Belgium Croatia, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Netherlands, Slovakia) or on 1 September 2023 (Slovenia). For those countries, a longer maximum period applies. 

Takeaway for Employers

Employers should not miss this opportunity to retroactively regularise the social security situation for their remote-working employees. 

Discover more about Health and Safety on our Global HR Law Guide

The view from other places.

Written by
Toffoletto de Luca Tamajo, working in employment law since 1925.
Valeria Morosini
Valeria Morosini
Partner - Italy
Toffoletto De Luca Tamajo
Melania Soncin
Senior Associate - Italy
Toffoletto De Luca Tamajo