Guide to Doing Business
Maximum working hours
The Labor Ordinance (Arbeidsverordening) that contains rules and regulations with respect to employment hours and overtime regulates the maximum number of working hours for employees who earn less than a certain annual income determined by national decree. Employees who earn more than the determined income are exempt from this Ordinance. The abovementioned ordinance only applies to regular workers. Regular workers are employees who work within the regular office hours while irregular workers are employees working outside of regular office hours in accordance with a recurrent schedule (timetable). For regular workers the maximum working hours per week is 45 hours provided the employee does not work more than eight hours a day. If the workweek consists of five days or less, the employee should not work more than 8½ hours a day. The period during which the employee has to work longer than six hours each day should be interrupted for a break of at least half an hour after a maximum of five hours.
For irregular workers the maximum working hours per week is regulated in separate state decrees and differs per industry.
In the event the employer requires its employees to work overtime, an overtime permit has to be obtained. After obtaining the permit an employee is allowed to work longer hours, in which event the employer is obliged to pay the employee overtime. Such longer hours can be during the employee’s break or if the employee works longer than the maximum amount of hours allowed per day.
Non-compliance with certain articles of the Ordinance can result with imprisonment or a fine.