Information on the rights and obligations of employers and workers in relation to one-day contracts in agriculture

The amendments to the Labour Code (KT), in force since 17 July 2015, created a new provision in Article 114a, which puts into effect an employment contract for short-term seasonal agricultural work for one day. The employment contract is concluded between a worker and a registered farmer for the processing of plants and collecting the harvest of fruits, vegetables, roses and lavender.

Employees under this type of contract must be insured for some of the insurance risks, thus acquiring social security rights without having their registration with the labour office terminated and without losing their right to social assistance and unemployment benefits. The preservation of these rights is ensured by the published changes to the relevant legal acts.

The adoption of the provision of Article 114a of the KT aims at limiting undeclared employment in seasonal agricultural work and at creating a possibility for employers in the economic activity of "Plant Growing" to employ workers in a more flexible way, including unemployed persons, persons receiving social support and those holding no professional qualifications.

What do employers who are registered farmers need to know before recruiting workers under a one-day employment contract for farm work:

  • The employment contract under Article 114a of the KT is concluded only for one day's work and allows for maximum flexibility in the recruitment of labour. The employer pays the wages personally to the worker against a receipt at the end of the working day and does not have to issue a separate document for the termination of this employment contract.
  • When concluding and terminating an employment contract under Article 114a of the KT, the employer is not obliged to comply with some of the basic requirements of the labour legislation applicable to other employment contracts:
    • The employer is not required to send notifications to the National Revenue Agency for registration and, subsequently, for termination of the employment contract in accordance with the procedure laid down in Decree No 5/29.12.2002 on the content and procedure for sending the notification under Article 62(5) of the KT.
    • The employer is not obliged to prepare and deliver a job description to the worker.
    • The working time under this employment contract is not recognised as length of service and the employer is not obliged to record it in the employment record book.
  • The employer is not required to pay additional remuneration for the acquired length of service and professional experience and compensation for unused paid annual leave, or other benefits in connection with the termination of the employment relationship.
  • The forms of employment contracts under in Article 114a of the Labour Code are registered in the Territorial Directorates of the Labour Inspectorate according to the location of the agricultural property.
  • Further information on the procedure for obtaining the forms of employment contracts can be obtained at the Territorial Directorates of the Labour Inspectorate or on the website of Executive Agency General Labour Inspectorate (EA GLI), as well as from the guidelines published on the website of the EA GLI under the heading “For employers and employees”.
  • Employers pay in advance the social security contributions for persons who have worked under employment contracts under Article 114a (1) of the KT, in accordance with Article 7(13) of the Social Insurance Code (KSO) using at least the minimum contribution basis for the relevant economic activity and qualification group.

What do workers who are going to conclude a one-day employment contract need to know:

  • The wages received from short-term seasonal employment under Article 114a of the KT and the related payments are not considered as income for the purposes of granting the monthly social benefits under Article 9 of the PPZSP, pursuant to § 1(1)(10)(r) of the Supplementary Provisions of the Regulation on the Implementation of the Social Assistance Act (PPZSP). These payments are also not considered as income in determining the right to targeted heating aid under the terms and conditions of Decree No RD 07-5/2008 of the Minister for Labour and Social Policy in accordance with § 1 thereof.
  • The requirement for unemployed persons of working age, who receive monthly social assistance pursuant to Article 9 of the PPZSP, to do community service each month, does not apply to persons who have concluded one-day employment contracts under Article 114a of the KT for the respective month, according to the change in Article 12(7)(8) of the PPZSP. Where the persons have concluded a work contract pursuant to Article 114a of the KT, they have to declare this to the Social Assistance Directorate and submit a copy of the contract by the 5th day of the following month.
  • The registration with employment offices as unemployed persons is not terminated when work is performed in accordance with Article 114a of the KT, as amended by Article 20(3)(4) of the Employment Promotion Act (ZNZ). By the 5th day of the following month, those working under this type of contract must inform the employment office where they are registered that they have worked under such a contract and declare the amount of wages received in accordance with Article 20(10) of the ZNZ. The relevant declaration can be obtained at the office or downloaded from the website of the Employment Agency, under the heading "Jobseekers", "Information on the registration of jobseekers". The unemployed person can submit it on site or through a licensed postal operator.
  • When working under an employment contract pursuant to Article 114a of the KT, persons become entitled to social security rights as they are subject to insurance in the Pension Fund for invalidity due to general illness, old age and death and in the Occupational Accident and Sickness Fund according to Article 4(10) of the Social Insurance Code (KSO). Those insured in these funds are entitled to:
    • Invalidity pensions due to accidents at work and occupational diseases.
    • Cash benefits for temporary incapacity for work due to an occupational accident and occupational disease, which are paid for the period of the incapacity for work, but for no more than 90 calendar days.
    • The period during which persons who have concluded one-day’s employment contracts worked the full statutory working hours is taken into account for the period of insurance for the purposes of retirement.
  • Persons who have concluded employment contracts under Article 114a during the month retain their right to be granted and paid unemployment benefits, irrespective of being employed and insured, in accordance with Article 54a(1)(3) and Article 54e(1)(1) of the KSO. Before the person starts work the employer is obliged to provide to him or her a copy of the employment contract that is completed and signed by both parties!
  • Under this contract of employment the wages are given to the employee in an envelope, at the end of the day, and the worker signs the receipts on both copies of the contract of employment – the employer’s and his/her own.
  • No workers can be employed under this contract in a position requiring the operation of agricultural machinery! The contract is only for manual processing of plants and manual collecting the harvest of fruits and vegetables.
  • For an individual worker, the number of contracts of this kind may not exceed more than 90 days in one calendar year. The normal duration of the working time under a one-day contract is 8 hours and the parties may also agree to work for 4 hours per day. The distribution of working time is agreed in the contract.
  • The workers must keep their copy of the contract, which is also signed by the employer, also after the end of the working day.

Remark: The information was provided by experts of the EA General Labour Inspectorate, the Agency for Social Assistance, the Employment Agency, the National Social Insurance Institute.