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In brief

This alert discusses Italy’s first steps towards an easing of lockdown measures.

On 26 April 2020 the Italian Government enacted a new decree aimed at easing some of the lockdown measures that are currently in place.


Here is a summary of the most important new provisions:

  • Starting on 4 May 2020, more business activities will be allowed to reopen. In particular, certain commercial and personal care activities can go back to business, provided that they comply with health and safety measures, including social distancing (1 meter between individuals). We can help employers check if their local activity can resume: feel free to reach out to your Baker McKenzie contact (emails at the bottom of this newsletter);
  • Starting 27 April 2020, employers who can reopen on 4 May 2020 will be allowed to carry out all those activities that are necessary to prepare for reopening (e.g., sanitizing the company’s premises);
  • Employers that will be allowed to reopen will comply with all health and safety measures called for by two protocols (you can read more on these here) as well as in specific protocols applicable to the industrial sector they belong to. Failure to comply with these measures may result in the suspension of the business;
  • All business activity, even if still suspended, can continue to be performed remotely or through smart working;
  • Employees or delegated third parties are entitled to access the business premises of suspended businesses in order to perform surveillance and maintenance activities, make payments, as well as clean and sanitize the premises. In these cases, companies must inform the local government office (i.e., “Prefettura”).
  • The shipment of goods in stock to third parties, as well as the receipt in shipped goods and supplies, is allowed, upon communication to the “Prefettura”.

In addition to this new decree, on 24 April 2020, the so-called “Cure Italy” decree (please see our previous newsletter here) was confirmed by the Italian Parliament. A few amendments were made to the previous text of the decree, namely:

  • all employees hired after 24 February 2020 can now benefit from government salary support via a social shock absorber;
  • union consultation to access two of two social shock absorbers, CIGO and FIS, is no longer required for businesses that are suspended due to Covid-19 measures.

Please note that individual and collective dismissals for business reasons remain prohibited until 18 May 2020. An extension of this ban is currently under discussion.


Massimiliano (Max) Biolchini joined Baker McKenzie in January 1999. He became a local partner in the Milan office in 2004 and was elected partner in 2011. He is the Head of the Italian Employment Law Practice and is member of the Steering Committee of the EMEA Employment Practice Group. He advises clients on all aspects of labor and employment law. He regularly contributes to the employment section of the prestigious Italian business newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore.


Uberto Percivalle is a partner in the Firm’s Milan office, where he has practiced since 1990. He focuses on employment law.


Antonio Luigi Vicoli is counsel in the Employment & Compensation Practice Group of Baker McKenzie Italian offices. He is a multilingual lawyer with English proficiency. Antonio is professionally qualified under the laws of Italy and admitted to practice in Italy, enrolled with the Lawyers’ Bar of Milan.