Only Luxembourg laws govern the world of work in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Regardless of their status, whether they are a resident or a frontier worker, a posted worker or a local employee, all persons working in Luxembourg are subject to the applicable labor code.
Here you will find the different types of contracts, as well as the full-time working hours and the legal vacations. We also discuss the subject of teleworking, specifically for cross-border workers. You will also know where to turn if you need to.
The different types of employment contracts in Luxembourg
There are several types of employment contracts, the most important of which are open-ended and fixed-term contracts. Employment contracts are concluded at the latest when the employee joins the company.
The Permanent Contract
The CDI or Contract for an indefinite period is signed between the employer and the employee. It is established without a deadline to meet a sustainable need of the company. The employee then works for the company in exchange for a salary.
The CDI can be broken by both parties, employer and employee, with a minimum notice period previously established in the contract. The employer who terminates the contract must justify his decision. If he does not do so, the dismissed employee has the possibility to ask for the reason of dismissal. The employer must then justify its decision. The employee can resign without any justification.
The Fixed Term Contract
A fixed-term contract is an employment contract signed between the employer and the employee for a specific period of time and for a specific, non-durable task. The maximum duration of a fixed-term contract is 2 years and it can be renewed twice. The CDD meets an extraordinary need of the company. If the need persists, the company will have to sign a permanent contract with its employee.
Other employment contracts
Other types of employment contracts can be signed between the employer and the employee. They correspond to specific cases and needs.
- The Temporary work corresponds to a specific need of a company, not lasting. It is the subject of a tripartite relationship between the employer and an interim company through a contract of provision on the one hand, and between the interim company and the person in charge of the mission on the other hand through a mission contract.
- The seasonal contract is an open-ended contract to meet a permanent need of the company but linked to a seasonal nature, such as the grape harvest.
- The professionalization internships correspond to the needs of professional reintegration for vulnerable workers.
Employees can legally benefit from telework days. During these days, they are allowed to work from home, in full agreement with their employer. Little used until now, telecommuting was used by only 20% of residents in 2019.
As far as border workers are concerned, telework days are negotiated in bilateral agreements by the Luxembourg government with the countries concerned. Indeed, if the number of authorized telecommuting days is exceeded by the frontier worker, he or she is liable for thetax on his salaried income in his country of residence and no longer in Luxembourg. The principle being that beyond 25% of the time worked in their country of residence, employees must register with local social security organizations. Their retirement pension is therefore no longer paid in Luxembourg and family allowances are no longer paid by the Grand Duchy. This can have a strong impact on the employee and therefore be disadvantageous from a financial point of view, beyond the improvement of the quality of life thanks to the reduction of transportation time.
The labor market was turned upside down with the Covid 19 crisis. This made it possible to make this number of days more flexible, so that employees who telework are not penalized. In order to limit the spread of the epidemic, teleworking has been made compulsory by the Luxembourg government in 2020, except in special cases and when it is impossible due to the occupation. Since then, the use of telework has increased more than threefold, particularly in public administration (x3.7) and among qualified personnel in large companies (x3.2). At the height of the crisis, more than half of the workforce, if not all the staff of financial institutions, information and communication sectors worked remotely (Source STATEC).
- French border workers benefit from 34 days of telework per year. Within the framework of the coronavirus and until June 30, 2022, they are allowed to exceed the threshold of 25% of its working time in telework, without risking to switch from the social security system.
- Belgian border workers are also entitled to 34 days of telework. This duration can be exceeded without being called into question until June 30, 2022, unless one of the countries expressly denounces the agreement.
- German frontier workers, who normally have only 19 days, are allowed until March 31, 2022 to telework as many days as they need
- This system is regularly renewed until the health crisis is over.
To date, telecommuting is left to the discretion of employers. In the context of a job search, the candidate can discuss this point with his future employer at the appropriate time.
The remuneration of the employee
The employer and the employee can freely decide on the salary at which the employee will be paid. Remuneration is calculated according to the mission or position, the employee’s qualifications and skills. However, a minimum social wage must be respected.
You are applying for a job and want to know the salary range you can expect? Check out the latest compensation trends here.
Legal working hours
Legal working hours
The legal working hours for a full-time job are 8 hours a day and 40 hours a week. The law allows for overtime of up to 2 hours per day and 8 hours per week.
The maximum working time cannot exceed 10 hours per day, nor 48 hours per week.
Each employee is legally entitled to 26 working days of paid annual leave. In addition to these days off, there are the legal holidays New Year’s Day, Easter Monday, May 1st and 9th, Ascension Day, Whit Monday, Bastille Day (June 23rd), Assumption Day, All Saints’ Day (November 1st), Christmas Day and Boxing Day (December 25th and 26th). If these holidays fall on a Sunday, they will be subject to additional days off, in addition to the 26 days above.
The collective agreements of the building and civil engineering sectors impose mandatory collective vacations on its employees every year. This measure, which lasts 15 working days in the summer and 10 working days in the winter, concerns approximately 18,000 people.
Concretely, the month of August turns into “Summerlach” or summer hole. All public and private construction sites are closed, except for exemptions granted by the Labour and Mines Inspectorate. This is the case, for example, when work is being done in schools, or in factories during production stoppages or on request if the ITM considers the work to be urgent. On the other hand, a private individual who is doing work will have to comply.
A sick employee is entitled to sick leave. These are very precisely regulated by law. In order not to put yourself at risk with your employer, you can find more information on work stoppages here.
Each employee is entitled to a certain amount of special leave for family events, including maternity and parental leave, death in the family,…
Other useful information in the world of work
Identical status for refugees and Luxembourg residents
The issue of refugee hiring was explored by Adem on May 11, 2017 at Diversity Day. The number of people benefiting from international protection, also known as “refugees”, is increasing in Luxembourg. Certain profiles are of interest to Luxembourg companies, particularly in the event of a lack of manpower in certain fields.
Luxembourg law gives refugees the same right to work as Luxembourg residents: they do not need a work permit.
Languages spoken at work
Luxembourgish, French and German are the three official languages in Luxembourg. However, due to the high proportion of foreigners in some companies, English is very strongly practiced in many areas of professional life .
In some professions, such as personal care, knowing Luxembourgish is essential. Knowing how to speak Luxembourg ish is highly valued by the Luxembourgish population, for example in stores and services.
Importance of networking
Luxembourg is a small country, often assimilated to a big village considering the number of inhabitants. The personal network is very important in the context of professional relationships. Don’t hesitate to turn to the many associations and participate in networking events! This can be particularly useful when looking for a job.
Where to get information for your work?
Chamber of employees CSL
The Chambre des Salariés or CSL is placed under the supervision of the Ministry of Labor and Employment. It includes all employees (white-collar or blue-collar), apprentices and retirees who work or have worked in Luxembourg.
In addition to its advisory role on all draft laws and Grand Ducal regulations, the Chambre des salariés informs you about labor and social security law in Luxembourg, employee rights and provides all information on health and well-being at work. It also appoints representatives to social security organizations.
One of the main missions of the CSL is also to train future employees and ensure the ongoing training of current employees.
The Chamber of Employees, through the Luxembourg Lifelong Learning Center, offers a wide range of training courses (law, marketing, human sciences, finance, office automation and computer science, etc.), in French, English or German, all leading to a certification validated by international universities.
The courses take place in different forms: seminars, evening courses – 224 modules and day courses, always by module.
Chamber of Trades and Crafts
The Chambre des Métiers de Luxembourg is the competent professional organization in the field of crafts. It brings together all the companies of the craft industry in Luxembourg, that is to say more than 120 local trades and jobs, listed in professional fields as diverse as food, trades related to communication, multimedia and entertainment, in the field of fashion, health and hygiene, mechanics and construction and various craft activities. The Chambre des Métiers represents more than 7,000 companies, i.e. 22% of the companies in Luxembourg.
The Chambre des Métiers de Luxembourg is committed to the preservation and development of the craft industry in Luxembourg. She is in charge of :
- vocational training in the crafts in order to preserve and develop the know-how of the craftsmen
- to draw up the legislative framework and define the regulations around the craft trades in order to preserve its know-how but at the same time to innovate
- to advise, inform,…
At the Chambre des Métiers, you will find all the information you need to set up a business, and seminars for business creators and other self-employed workers: business management, languages, technology, etc., apprenticeship and continuing education related to the craft trades and the craft professions.
Chamber of Commerce
The Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce is a public institution that supports and accompanies all Luxembourg companies, except those related to the craft industry and agriculture, in their development at national, European and international level. It represents 75% of all salaried employment in Luxembourg and constitutes 80% of Luxembourg’s GDP.
It provides economic analyses and services to its more than 90,000 member companies and to anyone interested in doing business. It is the most important professional chamber in the country.
The Chamber of Commerce can intervene in the legislation of the country by issuing opinions. Its objective is to promote entrepreneurship, the creation and development of the country’s businesses and to support economic and commercial relations with foreign countries.
The Merkur magazine of the Chamber of Commerce is the information magazine sent out every two months with a circulation of over 35,000 copies. You can request it online on the Chamber of Commerce website.
The Chamber of Commerce groups its training activities within the “Luxembourg School for Commerce”.
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