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From January of this year, staff can no longer be employed on a temporary basis eg. 3 months. The only exception to the rule is for a specific occasion, party, festive season, Easter, Christmas, fiestas etc. when there's a BRIEF surge in business. For instance, a shop can employ extra staff for the sales. For this type of contract, you can accumulate a maximum of 90 days p.a. in total for all employees put on contract eg. if you employ 5 people over the Christmas period of 10 days you will have used 50 days of the that 90-day limit.


Moreover, there is also an economical “penalty” for these brief contracts: 26.57€ per month per contract signed for less than 30 days.


Consequently, options are very limited. Other than the circumstances stated above, staff must be employed on a permanent basis; there is no expiry date. A trial period is included but after that if you want an employee to leave you either sack them with severance pay (equivalent of 33 days salary per year worked) or make them redundant (20 days per year worked).


There are 2 types of permanent contracts: 


1.     Permanent: Employee remains on contract indefinitely, no breaks in between, other than their month's holiday. 


2.- Permanent and discontinuous: This is for seasonal workers. You agree with the employee when they start their contract, a period of employment and a period of rest in which they are laid off from work. Eg. work 9 months and rest the other 3. During that time if they have sufficient period of contributions, they can claim unemployment benefit.


After that term of rest, you must summon them back to work. Failing to do so can result in a claim for unfair dismissal. They have priority over new employees.  Should you ever need to sack/make them redundant, their pay will be calculated as from the first day of their first contract and NOT from the date that you last summoned them back to work. 

The breaks do not have to be consecutive nor do all employees have to take their breaks simultaneously. Each employee can have shorter or longer breaks than others. It is ideal for this that know they will close in the low season or need less employees at a certain time of the year.  There is no maximum nor minimum number of months and both types are applicable to full time and part time staff.


For further information please contact this office.



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