French employment law
In France,employment law affords employees a good level of protection. Nevertheless, this legal environment is constantly changing as a result of government reforms and case law evolution.
Recent trends relate in particular to: (1) union representation and collective bargaining agreements; (2) working time; (3) mutual termination agreements; (4) senior management compensation; and (5) termination packages in listed companies. In France, choosing the wrong option may result in costly individual or collective litigation.
- All non-EU citizens need a work permit to work.
- Employers and employees are free to negotiate the terms and conditions of their employment relationship. However, employees have various minimum rights under the law, regardless of any provision to the contrary in their employment contract.
- Usually, employees work 35 hours per week. Only hours worked at the request of the employee’s superior will be regarded as overtime.
- Indefinite-term contracts: There must be real and serious grounds for dismissal (two types of valid grounds: personal grounds and economic grounds).
- Severance payments are only awarded if the employee has the minimum length of service and the relevant CBA provisions.
Find out how other countries' Employment Laws compare to those of France
People of Flichy Grangé Avocats, France
- Florence is a member of the American Bar Association
- Florence was admitted to the Paris Bar in 2009
- Leading individual – Legal 500 EMEA 2022
- Recognised since 2020 in The Best Lawyers in France Labour and Employment Law
- Recommended by The Legal 500 EMEA
- Nominated for the “HEC Lawyer” prize in 2017
- Florence published an article on corporate agreement templates in Liaisons sociales n° 81 Les Thématiques de Septembre 2020.
Florence Bacquet specialises in advising international companies on collective labour law issues: staff representative bodies, collective status, group disputes and litigation with major financial implications. She also advises on restructurings and transfer of undertakings.
A member of the American Bar Association, Florence, who is bilingual, graduated from the École des hautes études commerciales de Paris (HEC Paris); she holds two Masters degrees (business and tax law, labour law) from the Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne.
Florence began to practice with Joël Grangé’s labour law team at Gide Loyrette Nouel in 2007, and joined Flichy Grangé Avocats in 2009. She is actively involved with the firm’s work on legal aspects of the latest digital and information technologies.
Admitted to the Paris Bar in 2005
- HEC business school (graduated in 2002)
- Master’s degree in Business Law (Paris XI Sceaux University – 2002)
- Master’s degree in Employment Law (Paris I Sorbonne University – 2003)
- Recognised by Best Lawyers since 2019
- Stéphanie Dumas was nominated for the “HEC Lawyer” prize in 2012
- « Mobilité internationale : l’obligation de rapatriement survit-elle à la rupture du contrat initial ? » (La Semaine Juridique Social n° 27-28, 1249, dated 12 July 2016)
- « PSE – Les apports du Conseil d’État en matière de licenciement économique dans le cadre d’une procédure collective » (in collaboration with Guillaume Charent, La Semaine Sociale Lamy, n° 1712, dated 29 february 2016)
- « Le statut des cadres est-il menacé ? » (Le Figaro, dated 26 january 2016)
- « Loi Rebsamen : vos 4 nouvelles obligations sur la gestion de carrière des représentants du personnel » (DAF Magazine, dated 5 november 2015)
- « Créateur d’entreprise et demandeur d’emploi : ce qui change (ou pas) avec la nouvelle convention d’assurance chômage » (Semaine Sociale Lamy n°1339 dated 14 September 2014)
- « Négociation sur la sécurisation de l’emploi : les suggestions du cabinet Flichy Grangé sur le licenciement économique » (AEF dated 25 September 2012)
- « Le sort des salariés dans les procédures collectives : un dispositif largement inadapté » (Semaine Sociale Lamy n°1135 dated 15 September 2003)
Stéphanie Dumas advises and assists French and international clients on French labour law issues, and more specifically on all matters pertaining to: mergers & acquisitions, restructurings, downsizing and business transfers.
In addition, she regularly represents her clients before the Courts in individual and collective litigation, and has notably widened her litigation background in expatriate-related disputes.
Publications by Stéphanie Dumas
Admitted to the Paris Bar in 1988
- University of Paris (J.D., 1987)
- European Employment Lawyers Association
- International Bar Association
Band 1 – Chambers & Partners 2022
“Joël Grangé displays market-leading proficiency and “excellent expertise” in complex employment mandates. He assists clients with redundancy plans and mass litigations as well as global restructuring projects. Clients highlight his “strong knowledge of employment law.”
Hall of Fame – Legal 500 EMEA 2022
Repeatedly recognized by Best Lawyers guide since 2010. Joël also received in 2022 the recognition by Who’s Who Legal as Global Leader, National Leader and Thought Leader in Labour and Employment.
- Focus sur les points délicats de l’assiette de calcul de l’indemnité de congés payés – La Revue Fiduciaire 2021
- Setting up a special negotiating body in the context of a SE, Human Capital and Labour Law, Leaders League 2021
Joël Grangé advises and assists French and international clients on French labor law. He is specialized in mergers and restructuring operations, mass redundancies, transfers of undertakings and collective disputes. He also possesses a strong expertise in European Union law.
Moreover, Mr. Grangé provides counsel to clients as regards to executive management, collective bargaining agreements and employee saving schemes.
In addition, he regularly represents clients in collective disputes which have widened his litigation background.
Publications by Joël Grangé
- Admitted to the Paris Bar in 1996
- D.J.C.E. at the University of Poitiers and Montpellier (Corporate law degree, 1994)
- D.E.A. in private law at the University of Poitiers (1993)
- Recognised by Chambers & Partners 2022: “Olivier Kress is an accomplished practitioner who assists clients with large-scale redundancy plans. He is adept at advising domestic and international clients alike.”
- Listed by “Best Lawyers” in 2009 and 2010 and listed as a recommended employment law specialist in France.
- Ranked in 2010 as one of the top employment lawyers in Europe by Who’s Who Legal.
Mr. Kress frequently publishes articles on a wide range of topics such as mergers and acquisitions, working time duration and accidents at work.
Olivier Kress advises national and international companies on merger and acquisition operations and restructuring plans under the angle of labor law. He is specialized in mass redundancies procedures, collective bargaining agreements and outsourcing.
He also possesses a particular expertise in the transfer of undertakings, complex business reorganizations and in assisting executives in transformation phases.
Furthermore, Mr. Kress provides counsel to clients as regards to international employment law, international mobility and immigration matters.
Additionally, he has a rich experience in organizing high-profile carve-outs and the necessary arrangements resulting from these operations.
Finally, he regularly represents his clients in both civil and criminal proceedings in the event of sophisticated disputes (collective as well as individual).
- Admitted to the Paris Bar in 1996
- Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics
- Le Cercle De la Compliance
Natacha holds a dual degree in Private Law from Paris 1 Sorbonne/King’s College London and a master’s degree in International Economic Law from Paris 1 Sorbonne.
- Peut-on accuser son patron d’être un bandit, un escroc et un voleur? (‘Whistleblowing: Can you accuse your boss of being a villain, a swindler or a thief?’), Le Monde, 9/11/2021
- Future loi sur la protection des lanceurs d’alerte: un casse-tête pour les RH? (‘Future whistleblower protection law: a headache for HR?’), AEF, 20/12/2021
- Du nécessaire équilibre entre devoir de loyauté, présomption d’innocence et liberté d’expression (‘The necessary balance between duty of loyalty, presumption of innocence and freedom of expression’), Semaine sociale Lamy, 14/02/2022
- Les chartes d’entreprise – Dossier – Bulletin Joly Travail – mars 2022 – n° 3 / La charte éthique : encadrement juridique périlleux d’un objet polymorphe
- Lois sur les lanceurs d’alerte : comment évaluer les impacts et ressources nécessaires ? – AEF 22 février 2022 – Dépêche n° 668146
After 15 years of experience as a senior ethics practitioner for a leading multinational, Natacha Lesellier has developed a particular expertise in the areas of business ethics, compliance, human rights, diversity and inclusion, environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards and corporate social responsibility (CSR), generally.
She counsels clients, irrespective of size, type of industry or level of advancement, on a wide-range of issues (strategy, risk assessment, policies and procedures, communication and training, whistleblowing mechanisms and internal investigations) to ensure that the various needs of the client are being met. As an added benefit, Natacha’s experience with the corporate world’s diversified stakeholders, allows her to advise clients on the “soft law” expectations in these areas.
Fully bilingual, Natacha is the preferred counsel for foreign enterprises looking to implement company programs in all its French entities and for French companies seeking to deploy their programs internationally.
Natacha began her career in private practice at Gide Loyrette Nouel (an international law firm headquartered in Paris) in 1995, before moving to L’Oréal in 2001. She joined Flichy Grangé Avocats as a partner in 2021.
Publications by Natacha Lesellier
- Admitted to the Paris Bar in 2005
- Member of the International Bar Association
- Member of BCFL
- D.E.S.S. in Pharmaceutical law, 2003
- D.E.A in Employment law, 2002
- LLM in Master of laws, University of Essex, 2001
Recognised by Best Lawyers since 2021
- Les cinq points à retenir de l’accord-cadre national interprofessionnel sur la formation professionnelle – Actuel RH – 15 novembre 2021
- Forum – Le compte personnel de formation et l’employeur : aperçu rapide – Semaine sociale Lamy – 30 novembre 2020 – n° 1931
Caroline Scherrmann’s practice has focused on advice and litigation in relation to vocational training, restructuring, negotiation of company-wide agreements and career-management for top executives within international groups.
She has also specialised in advising the representative vocational training agencies (opérateurs de compétences or OPCO) on changes to their legal status or organisational structure.
Caroline Scherrmann, who speaks fluent English, holds two Masters Degrees (labour law, pharmaceutical law) and a Master of Laws in EU law; she began to practice in 2005 with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, before joining the teams of Hubert Flichy and Olivier Kress at Flichy Grangé Avocats in 2010.