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Hungary: Law to transpose Whistleblowing Directive introduced to National Assembly

Proposal No. T/3089 about complaints, reports in the public interest, and rules relating to reporting abuse, which transposes the Directive on the Protection of Persons who Report Breaches of Union Law (Directive (EU) 2019/1937) ('the Whistleblowing Directive'), was introduced, on 28 February 2023, to the Hungarian National Assembly. In particular, the proposal provides that anyone with a complaint or public interest report can contact the authorised body to proceed with the subject related to the complaint or the public interest report.

In addition, the proposal highlights that complainants and reporters must not suffer disadvantage for making the complaint, unless they are subject to exceptions, including, among others, that it is reasonably probable that the whistleblower has caused illegal damage or other rights violations to others. Further, the proposal notes that if a public interest notification concerns a natural person, the personal data of the whistleblower may not be disclosed to the person requesting the information during the exercise of the right to information and access.

More specifically, the proposal outlines that an employer that employs at least 50 persons must establish an internal abuse reporting system. Equally, the proposal notes that employers who employ at least 50, but no more than 249 persons, may jointly establish an internal abuse reporting system. However, the proposal clarifies that employers may establish an internal abuse reporting system even if such obligation does not exist in the law.

You can read the proposal here and track its progress here, both only available in Hungarian.

UPDATE (18 April 2023)

Law to transpose Whistleblowing Directive sent to President

The proposal was signed, on 16 April 2023, by the President of the National Assembly, following amendments and thereafter sent to the President of the Republic. In particular, the amended proposal makes changes in regard to deletion, removing the provision that notifications that are unfounded or require no further action should be deleted within 60 days. Furthermore, the amended proposal removes the requirement of unambiguous consent for disclosure of personal data, now only requiring consent in the applicable circumstances.

You can read the proposal here, the amendments here, and track its progress here, all only available in Hungarian.