Table of Contents

Ireland

Table of Contents

Currency

Euro (EUR)

Payroll Frequency

Weekly or Monthly

Employer Taxes

8.80% - 11.05%

About Ireland

The “Spooky Season” excitement is universal, captivating people of all ages. Children eagerly anticipate trick-or-treating, while adults delight in decorating their homes and distributing candy. Surprisingly, despite its association with America, Halloween finds its roots in Ireland, dating back to around 100 A.D. Ireland’s historical connection to one of the world’s most cherished festivals highlights its rich cultural heritage. It’s also a prime location for businesses seeking global expansion, thanks to its skilled and dedicated workforce, business-friendly environment, and access to the European market.

Employment Relationship

• Permanent Employment

Contracts made for indefinite duration are considered permanent. Contracts that are not made for fixed term are indefinite term contracts. Such contracts continue until the employer or employee ends it. Employees are entitled to annual leave, maternity leave, remuneration, and protection from unfair dismissal. The Terms of Employment (Information) Act states that an employer must issue a written statement of terms and conditions within two months of the employment start date. 

• Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts

In Ireland, a fixed-term employee is hired: Under a contract that contains a specific start and end date, or To carry out a specific task or project, or Under a contract, the continuation of which depends on an event, such as funding from an external source. Employees cannot be employed on a series of fixed-term contracts indefinitely. If an employer intends to renew a fixed-term contract, a written statement must be given to the fixed-term employee by the date of renewal. Fixed term contracts can be renewed twice for a maximum total duration of 4 years.  Fixed term employees have the same rights as permanent employees, including right to full maternity leave. They cannot be treated less favorably than comparable permanent employees unless the employer can objectively justify the different treatment. 

• Temporary Employment Contratcs

The law in Ireland defines an "agency worker" as "an individual employed by an employment agency under a contract of employment by which the individual may be assigned to work for, and under the direction and supervision of, a person other than the employment agency." The Terms of Employment Act states that all temporary agency workers must have equal treatment with workers hired directly regarding their working time, pay rate, night work, rest breaks, overtime pay, annual leave and public holidays. Employers can conclude "zero-hour" contracts for casual work, work done in emergency situations and short-term relief to cover routine absences. Such contracts apply where the employee is available for work but their hours of work are not specified under the employment contract. A zero-hours contract requires employees to be available for a certain number of hours per week, or when required, or both. 

Probationary Period

In Ireland, an employment contract may include a probationary period of up to 6 months. Employment agreements that include a probationary period must be in writing. Employees can be dismissed without notice for poor performance during their probation. A probationary employee is entitled to the same rights as a non-probationary employee with regard to holidays and payslips.

Working Hours

The maximum average number of hours an employee can work per week is 48. The workweek average is typically determined over a 4-month period. Exceptions exist for seasonal workers, work that involves predictable surge activity, and employees under collective agreements. Further, employees are entitled to a rest period of up to 11 consecutive hours for every 24 hours of work. For night workers generally, the maximum night working time is 48 hours per week averaged over a 2 month period or a longer period specified in a collective agreement which must be approved by the Labour Court. All employees have the "Right to Disconnect" from work. The Right to Disconnect gives employees the right to switch off from work outside of normal working hours, including the right to not respond immediately to emails, telephone calls, or other messages 

Holidays / PTO

• Statutory Holidays

New Year's Day – January 1 St. Patrick's Day – March 17 Easter Monday – date subject to change annually The first Monday in May The first Monday in June The first Monday in August The last Monday in October Christmas Day – December 25 St. Stephen's Day – December 26

• Paid Annual Leave

In Ireland, all employees, whether full-time, part-time, temporary, or casual, earn annual leave entitlements from the time they start work. Most employees are entitled to four weeks of paid annual leave per year, although they may be entitled to less depending on time worked.  The employer determines the timing of an employee’s annual leave, considering work and personnel requirements, and should consult the employee or the relevant union in advance. Pay for the leave must be issued in advance and calculated at the employee’s regular weekly rate. Employees can accrue statutory annual leave when they are on long-term certified sick leave. An annual leave carryover period of 15 months after a leave year applies to employees who could not take annual leave during the relevant leave year or the normal carryover period of 6 months due to sickness. 

• Sick Leave

Ireland enacted the Sick Leave Act in July 2022. From January 1, 2024, employees will have a right to paid sick leave for up to 5 days in 2024, 7 days in 2025, and 10 days in 2026. They will also be entitled to a rate of payment for statutory sick leave of 70% of normal wages to be paid by employers (up to a maximum EUR 110 per day). To be entitled to paid sick leave under the new scheme, employees must be working for their employer for at least 13 weeks. They will also need to be certified by a GP as unfit to work. Employers are required to include their sick pay policy in employment contracts.  If employees cannot work because they are sick or injured, and they have enough social insurance contributions, they can apply to the Department of Social Protection (DSP) for weekly illness benefit. 

• Maternity Leave

In Ireland, employees are entitled to maternity benefits. Maternity benefits payments are paid by the government for 26 weeks (156 days). At least 2 weeks and not more than 16 weeks of leave must be taken before the end of the week in which the baby is due. Employees have the right to an additional 16 weeks of unpaid maternity leave immediately after the end of the 26 weeks’ paid leave. Maternity leave applies to birth or adoptive parents and must start within 26 weeks of birth or placement. The Irish Maternity Benefit is EUR 250 (Euros) per week. In January 2023, the weekly rate of Maternity Benefit will increase by EUR 12 with proportional increases for people on reduced rates of payment. Employers are not statutorily obligated to pay women who are on maternity leave. However, some employers may top up the amount employees get from Maternity Benefit to match the employee’s normal pay. Employees must have at least 39 weeks of PRSI contributions paid in the 12-month period before the first day of their maternity leave to be eligible for benefit. If employees have dependents, their maternity benefit is compared to the rate of illness benefit that they would have received for absence due to illness and they are paid the lower amount.

• Paternity Leave

Relevant parents are provided with 2 weeks of paid paternity leave. The benefit is currently EUR 250 per week, paid by the Department of Social Protection. In January 2023, the weekly rate of Paternity Benefit will increase by EUR 12. The leave applies to birth or adoptive parents and must start within 6 months of birth or placement. Employees must apply to their employer in writing at least 4 weeks before taking paternity leave. Self-employed persons must apply 12 weeks before. Employees must have 39 weeks' contributions to be eligible for benefits. The leave is available to all fathers, including self-employed, same-sex couples, and adoptive parents.

Termination of Employment

• Notice Period

In Ireland, persons who have been continually employed for at least 13 weeks must provide their employer with a notice of one week to terminate employment. Employment contracts may specify a longer notice period. Employers must give continuously serving employees a notice that depends on the duration of their service, between one and eight weeks. If the employee is not required to work for any part of their notice, the employer must pay them for that period. If either party terminates an employment contract due to misconduct, no notice is required. Employees and employers can also agree to waive their right to notice. 

• Severance Benefits

Employees aged 16 or over with 104 weeks (2 years) of continuous service at a job are entitled to a statutory redundancy payment, a lump-sum amount based on the employee's salary. All eligible employees are entitled to: If over age 16, 2 weeks' pay for every year of service, and 1 additional week's pay, also known as a bonus week The payment amount is subject to a maximum earnings limit of EUR 600 per week.