Labour laws play a crucial role in shaping the relationship between employers and employees, safeguarding their rights and ensuring a fair and balanced work environment. In Poland, a country with a rich history and a dynamic economy, labour laws have evolved over the years to address the changing needs of the workforce and the business landscape. In this blog post, we will delve into the key aspects of labour law in Poland, highlighting its main features, rights, and regulations that both employers and employees should be aware of.
The cornerstone of the employer-employee relationship in Poland is the employment contract. This legally binding document outlines the terms and conditions of employment, including job responsibilities, working hours, wages, and benefits. Employment contracts in Poland can be for an indefinite period or for a fixed term, with specific rules governing each type. Employers are required to provide a written employment contract within three days of the employee’s start date.
Working Hours and Rest Periods
The standard work week in Poland consists of 40 hours, typically spread across five days. Any hours worked beyond this limit are considered overtime, and employees are entitled to overtime pay. The maximum permissible working time, including overtime, is 48 hours per week. However, an employee’s consent is required to work more than 8 hours a day or 40 hours a week.
Employees are entitled to breaks during their working hours, including a minimum of 15 minutes for every 4.5 hours of work and a 30-minute break for a workday exceeding 6 hours.
Minimum Wage and Compensation
Poland has a statutory minimum wage, which is subject to periodic adjustments. The minimum wage is determined by the government and is aimed at ensuring a basic standard of living for workers. As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, the minimum wage in Poland was around PLN 2,800 per month. However, it’s important to note that this figure may have changed since then.
In addition to the minimum wage, employees are entitled to various forms of compensation, including holiday pay, sick pay, and maternity/paternity leave benefits. The compensation rates and conditions are outlined in labour law and can vary based on factors such as length of service and circumstances.
Termination of Employment
The termination of employment in Poland is regulated by both labour law and the terms of the employment contract. Termination can occur for various reasons, including mutual agreement, the employee’s resignation, or dismissal by the employer. In the case of dismissal, specific procedures must be followed, such as providing written notice and citing a valid reason for termination.
Unfair dismissal, which involves dismissing an employee without valid cause, is prohibited by law. Employees have the right to challenge their dismissal through labour courts if they believe it was unjust. In order to make sure that your rights are not violated, it is worthwhile to take the help of lawyers https://rpms-legal.com/
Collective Bargaining and Trade Unions
Trade unions play an important role in representing workers’ interests in Poland. These unions negotiate with employers on various matters, including wages, working conditions, and benefits. Collective bargaining agreements are negotiated between trade unions and employers’ organizations and can cover specific industries or sectors.
While membership in trade unions is voluntary, they are recognized as important entities in the labour landscape and have a legal basis for their activities.
Health and Safety
Employers in Poland are responsible for providing a safe and healthy working environment for their employees. This includes complying with occupational health and safety regulations, providing necessary training, and taking measures to prevent workplace accidents and injuries.
Employees also have the right to refuse work if they believe it poses an immediate and serious threat to their health or safety. However, this right is subject to certain conditions and should be exercised judiciously.
Maternity and Parental Leave
Poland has provisions for maternity and parental leave to support employees during significant life events. Pregnant employees are entitled to maternity leave, which typically starts around 30 days before the expected due date and continues for 20 weeks after childbirth.
Both parents are entitled to parental leave, which can be taken by the mother, father, or both. This leave can be shared between parents and typically lasts until the child reaches a certain age.
Labour law in Poland is a comprehensive framework that governs the relationship between employers and employees, safeguarding their rights and ensuring fair treatment. It covers a wide range of areas, including employment contracts, working hours, compensation, termination, trade unions, health and safety, and leave policies. By understanding and adhering to these regulations, both employers and employees contribute to a harmonious and productive work environment in this vibrant European nation.