2011 - Activities of the Member States in the Administrative Commission on the implementation of the new Regulations in the field of coordination of the social security systems
Activities of the Member States in the Administrative Commission on the implementation of the new Regulations in the field of coordination of the social security systems Cristina ABAGIU, Counsellor for European Affairs, Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Protection Bucharest, November 3rd, 2011
• In 2010 and 2011 the Member States took part intensively to the activities in the Administrative Commission to complete the set of tools available for social security institutions in order to provide guidance and to facilitate their understanding and application of Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009.
• At the same time, within the Administrative Commission, the Member States devoted their energy to discussing strategic issues, in particular as regards the relationship of the social security coordination rules with other legal instruments having an impact on free movement of persons.
New and Revised Interpretative Decisions and Recommendations adopted by the Administrative Commission• By entering into force on 1 May 2010 of the new Regulations in the field of coordination of the social security systems, almost 70 interpretative Decisions and Recommendations of the Administrative Commission on the implementation of Regulations (EEC) No 1408/71 and 574/72 had to be reviewed and adapted.
New and Revised Interpretative Decisions and Recommendations• This process, which started in 2009, has been successfully completed:• 25 new Decisions and Recommendations of the Administrative Commission have been published in the Official Journal between April and June 2010.• Since December 2010, two additional decisions (H6 and S8) have been adopted and published in the Official Journal of the European Union and the complete Practical Guide on Applicable Legislation.
Legal questions arising from Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009• In addition to the formal decisions which are published in the Official Journal of the European Union, the Administrative Commission also takes decisions and adopts guidance which are not published there but rather reported in the minutes of the meetings or published by other means (usually on the European Commissions website on social security coordination) as separate documents.
Legal questions arising from Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009• Extensive work has been brought to a successful end in the field of applicable legislation.• Guidance on the posting provisions and Guidance for situations where an activity is performed in two or more Member States was adopted by the Administrative Commission.• Together, these two elements form the Practical Guide on applicable legislation.
Legal questions arising from Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009• As for the transport sector, a monitoring procedure and questionnaire in order to identifying practices and possible issues to determine applicable legislation for international transport was presented by the Secretariat in the 328th meeting of the Administrative Commission (AC Note 476/11).
Legal questions arising from Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009• Child-raising periods (new Article 44 of Regulation (EC) No 987/2009): in the AC Working Party meeting on 14 April 2011, the MS representatives had the opportunity to discuss extensively this new provision and held a first exchange of views on a common interpretation of how these periods should be defined and taken into account.
Legal questions arising from Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and 987/2009• Reimbursement mechanisms between Member States for unemployment benefits provided to frontier workers (new Article 65(6) and (7) of Regulation (EC) No 883/2004: the MS discussed extensively in the AC meetings the interpretation of these provisions which aim at distributing the costs between the MS of residence and the MS of last activity.
Miscellaneous Amendments 2011• At its 327th meeting in June, the Administrative Commission discussed the proposals from the Member States for Miscellaneous Amendments 2011 to Regulations (EC) Nos 883/2004 and 987/2009.• Traditionally, this exercise is carried out in order to reflect legal changes at national level and take stock of recent developments in cross-border mobility which can affect social security coordination.
Miscellaneous Amendments 2011• The proposals for non-substantial change of a technical nature put forward by the Member States may be included in a Commission proposal for an amending regulation.• This is part of an annual exercise which will lead to the preparation of a formal proposal by the European Commission for a Commission Regulation and a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council based on the proposals from the Commission and Member States.
Other ongoing strategic discussions• Social security coordination is not isolated from other policy areas where free movement of persons is a key principle. Therefore, in the Administrative Commission MS are discussing the inter-relation between social security coordination rules and other legal instruments, such as the Residence Directive (Directive 2004/38/EC on the right of citizens of the Union and their family members to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member-States) or Cross-border healthcare (Directive 2011/24/EU).
Other ongoing strategic discussions• In this respect, on the 328th Administrative Commission meeting under point V. "Relationship between Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 and Directive 2004/38/EC“, has been presented the “trESS analytical study 2011 on social security coverage of non-active persons moving to another Member State” (AC Note 471/11)
Other ongoing strategic discussions• The AC Working Party of 4 October 2011 was dedicated to the examination of issues related to cross-border healthcare, in the context of the forthcoming transposition of the directive.• In addition, ongoing discussions include a reflection on the concept of long-term care benefits, with a view to examining how these benefits could be defined and how social security coordination could apply to them.
Monitoring of the EESSI (Electronic Exchange of Social Security Information) Project• In the past two years, the Administrative Commission has been very busy monitoring the overall progress of the EESSI project, with regular reports being made at its meetings.• At its October 2011 meeting, a comprehensive report on the overall status of the project was presented to the Administrative Commission by the Commission and the EESSI Steering committee: “EESSI Progress Report” of 31 August 2011 (AC Note 329/11).
Monitoring of the EESSI project• In addition to the Technical Commission, the Administrative Commission is supported by the EESSI Steering Committee, in which experts from the Member States and from the Commission meet.• The role of this EESSI Steering Committee is in particular to bring in experience and expertise in the overall monitoring of the project, to follow-up on the implementation of EESSI in Member States and to give advice to the Administrative Commission for the strategic orientations.
Monitoring of the EESSI project• Several elements of the EESSI project on which work in the Administrative Commission is carried out: - Agreed on the format and the content of the Portable Documents (PD) that will be delivered to the citizens, providing information and certification with regards to their rights. - Review and finalisation of the new Structured Electronic Documents (SEDs) that will replace the E- forms. For this purpose the Administrative Commission has set up several Ad Hoc Groups.
Monitoring of the EESSI project• Steering preparations at national level for implementing EESSI project and ensuring cooperation between Member States, on the basis of the recommendations of the EESSI Steering Committee and the Technical Commission.
Monitoring of the EESSI project• On this basis, the Administrative Commission discussed on the extension of the duration of the transitional period which Member States can use in order to put in place successfully all practical arrangements for electronic exchange of social security data and adopted in its last meeting Decision E3 concerning the transitional period as defined in Article 95 of Regulation (EC) No. 987/2009.
Enhanced Cooperation under the new Regulations• One of the key features of the new social security coordination rules is enhanced cooperation between Member States and between institutions in the Member States, in order to exchange of good practices and reflect on common tools.
Enhanced Cooperation under the new Regulations• Two areas of cooperation were discussed during 2010 and 2011: - The external dimension of social security, with a reflection on the possibility to develop a common EU approach to bilateral social security agreements with third countries. - The measures against Fraud and Error: based on the recommendations of two reports from the Ad Hoc Group on combating Fraud and Error - Decision H5.
Enhanced Cooperation under the new Regulations• Decision H5 aims to strengthening the cooperation on combating fraud and error in the context of the coordination rules.• Measures against Fraud and Error: investigations are being undertaken in order to define possible ways of cooperation, especially when it comes to the identification of persons and to the notification of deceased persons.