3. Hypothesis 3: Force the performance of tests outside the company?

This possibility raises still other questions.

First, and before any legal consideration, the practice of testing in France remains limited to those with symptoms of Covid-19 and to those who have been in contact with infected persons. In such a context, it appears difficult for any employee who does not fall into these two scenarios, to be tested, even if that was their wish.

Second, this question immediately calls up two texts, which are article L. 1121-1 of the French Labor Code (4) protecting the employee's private life, and article L. 1132-1 of the same Code (5), which prohibits all discriminatory measures due to health conditions, in particular.

Thus, the fact of requiring the employee to have recourse to a test outside the company could be perceived as contravening the preservation of the individual rights and freedoms of the employees. Furthermore, any subsequent measure could be considered discriminatory.

Finally, this scenario seems definitively to be banished since it appears from the CNIL recommendations that the collection of medical data on employees directly by the employer is completely prohibited.

Indeed, the test results are "subject to medical confidentiality".

The company could, in any case, "receive only the possible notice of suitability or unfitness to return to work issued by the health professional".

As a result, the employer “will only be able to process this single piece of information, without any other details relating to the employee's state of health, in a manner analogous to the treatment of sick leave which does not indicate the pathology whose employee is affected ”.

To read all the article, please click on the link below.



  1. « Protocole national de déconfinement pour les entreprises [...] » : https://travail-emploi.gouv.fr/IMG/pdf/protocole-national-de-deconfinement.pdf
  2. Cass., Soc.,  31 mars 2015, n° 13-25.436 : https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichJuriJudi.do?idTexte=JURITEXT000030445949


  1. Coronavirus (COVID-19) : les rappels de la CNIL sur la collecte de données personnelles par les employeur, 07 mai 2020 :




  1. L. 1121-1, Code du travail : https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichCodeArticle.do?idArticle=LEGIARTI000006900785&cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006072050&dateTexte=20080501
  2. L. 1132-1, Code du travail : https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichCodeArticle.do?idArticle=LEGIARTI000041411987&cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006072050&dateTexte=20191229


Frédéric CHHUM avocat et membre du conseil de l’ordre des avocats de Paris (mandat 2019-2021)

CHHUM AVOCATS (Paris, Nantes, Lille)

e-mail: chhum@chhum-avocats.com



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