The Public Transport Fund, governed by Inter-ministerial decree No. 86985 of 9 January 2015, subsequently modified by Inter-ministerial decree No. 97510 of 17 October 2016, is not a legal entity, is an INPS scheme and enjoys independent financial and asset management.
The Fund takes steps to implement workers' reorganisation processes, in order to encourage change and renewal of professional figures and to implement income and employment support instruments (INPS circular No. 186 of 30 September 2016 and INPS No. 160 of 31 October 2017).
Specifically, the Fund provides:
- ordinary allowances;
- supplementary benefits of the New Social Insurance for Employment (NASpI);
- financing of training programmes following the signing of specific agreements with inter-professional funds;
- extraordinary allowances for income support (not covered in this sheet).
The benefits listed above are aimed at all dependent workers, excluding managers, but including apprentices with a professional employment contract, public transport companies that have employed an average of more than five employees in the six months prior to the start date of suspensions / decreases of working hours.
Employees with an apprenticeship contract for professional qualification and diploma, upper secondary education diploma and higher technical specialisation certificate and workers with an apprenticeship contract for higher education and research are excluded.
Ordinary allowances can be accessed by all workers affected by a decrease in working hours or suspension of work, for reasons provided for by the legislation on ordinary or extraordinary wage supplementation (only for corporate re-organisation).
Redundant workers who do not meet the requirements for accessing extraordinary benefits can access a supplementary income support allowance in respect of the NASpI unemployment benefit.
Start date and duration
The ordinary allowance is paid for a period not exceeding 90 days, to be calculated in a two-year rolling period. In exceptional cases, this period may be extended quarterly, upon submission of a new claim, up to a maximum of 12 months in a two-year rolling period. The extension is authorised by the Committee after verifying the requirements of exceptional nature.
If the company has benefited from the wage supplement for 12 consecutive months, a new claim may be proposed if a period of at least 52 weeks of normal work has elapsed.
The maximum total duration relative to the performance of the ordinary allowance cannot in any case be more than 24 months in a five-year rolling period.
What am I entitled to?
The ordinary allowance consists of the supplementation of remuneration in favour of employees whose work performance is suspended or reduced due to the reasons provided for in the event of the Ordinary Wage Compensation Fund or CIGO and due to corporate reorganisation (CIGS) and therefore for causes beyond the employee or employer's control.
The wage subsidy must be granted for the time deemed necessary to resume interrupted production activities. The sum of the allowance is established at 80% of the total remuneration that would have been due to the worker for their unworked hours, ranging from zero hours to contracted working hours.
For 2019, the maximum monthly amount of the benefit, payable net of the 5.84% decrease that remains available to the Fund, is equal to €935.21 for salaries equal to or less than €2,148.74, and to €1,124.04 for salaries greater than €2,148.74 (INPS circular No. 5 of 25 January 2019). The amounts are re-evaluated every year with the methods and criteria in place for the CIGO (Ordinary Wage Compensation Fund).
In cases where the ordinary allowance is used, the Fund shall pay the relevant contribution to the Scheme to which the worker concerned is registered.
Furthermore, the Fund signs specific agreements with the inter-professional fund to which the employers who refer to the public transport sector adhere, in order to ensure the carrying out of training programmes for the professional reconversion or retraining of staff that may be made redundant, also in co-operation with the appropriate national or European Union funds. Resources deriving from these agreements remain tied to training purposes.
The Fund operates in accordance with the balanced budget principle and cannot make payments if it has no financial resources. Payments borne by the Fund are granted following the creation of specific financial reserves and within the limits of the resources already acquired.
To fund the ordinary allowance, and for the relevant contribution, an ordinary contribution of 0.50% is due monthly to the Fund (of which 0.333% is payable by the employer and 0.167% by workers) of the taxable salary for social security purposes of all employees, excluding managers.
Ordinary contributions are due from the current pay period at the date of entry into force of the founding decree of the Fund (March 2015).
In the event of disbursement by the Fund of ordinary allowance payments, an additional contribution, payable by the employer, is also due, in the amount of 1.5% calculated on the taxable salaries for social security purposes lost by the employees who make use of the benefits.
Therefore, the payment is made by the employer to the eligible employees at the end of each pay period and is reimbursed by the INPS to the employer or offset by this in the monthly contribution statement, as explained by INPS circular No. 170 of 15 November 2017. The legislator has established peremptory deadlines for the adjustment or applications for reimbursement of supplements paid to workers by the employer: these must be made, under penalty of forfeiture, within six months from the issuing of INPS authorisation.
Direct payment can be authorised by the Management Committee exclusively if the company experiences serious and documented financial difficulties, at the express request of the parties.
The relevant contribution, is calculated on the basis of the taxable salary for social security purposes and is useful for obtaining the right to a pension, including early retirement, as well as for calculating its size.
The calculation is based on the financing rate in force in the pension scheme of each beneficiary worker.
The worker that carries out employed or independent work during the income support period does not have the right to the benefit for the days of work carried out. The accumulation restriction can be explained as total incompatibility or total or partial cumulability as identified in the INPS circular No. 130 o, 4 October 2010 and in INPS circular No. 89 of 23 May 2017, in paragraph 2.9.c.
It is possible to lodge an administrative appeal against the measures adopted by the administrative committee within 90 days of notifying the resolution.
As there is no obligation for a company agreement, the request for intervention may also be submitted in the event of failure to reach an agreement, provided that the claim is preceded by the completion of the procedures provided for by the national collective agreements and by the current legislation regarding processes that involve changes. working conditions or employment levels, attaching the report drawn up following the outcome of the procedures.
In cases of suspension or a decrease of productive activities, employers are in any case obliged to comply with the obligations of providing information and consulting with the trade unions. To verify compliance with these obligations, identified in the collective agreement of 23 May 2016, it is necessary to have a copy of the receipts of the registered letter with return receipt or of the certified email address (PEC) with which the preventive notice was given to the RSU / RSA and to the secretariats regionally relevant of trade union organisations signing the aforementioned agreement.
How can I claim ?
The claim for accessing the ordinary allowance must be submitted on-line to INPS, through the dedicated service, not before 30 days from the beginning of the suspension or decrease of working activities and no later than 15 days from its beginning.
The review of claims is carried out by the Management Committee primarily for applications concerning the benefits of the ordinary allowance and secondly for those relating to the supplementary services to NASpI, extraordinary allowance and training, according to the chronological order in which claims are submitted.