Hiring Employees in France

Hiring Employees in France

Updated on Monday 18th April 2016

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When hiring employees in France, the Labour Code (Code du Travail in French) is the document of reference for labour law. The relationship between the employer and the employee is regulated by the French employment law and by various European Union directives and treaties.
The French Labour Code gives employees certain rights that must be taken into consideration by French business owners who want to hire personnel. The most important conditions refer to employment conditions, working hours, overtime, notice periods, various health and safety regulations and other issues.

Types of employment contracts in France

There are two main types of employment contracts in France, categorized according to their duration: contracts concluded for an unlimited term (CDI) and contracts that have a fixed-term (CDD).
Employment contracts that have no specified end-date are considered permanent job contracts. Employment is usually preceded by a trial period. An unlimited term employment contract may be terminated by either party by observing the legal notice period.
Fixed-term employment contracts are concluded for a specific amount of time. They can be renewed only once and they must not exceed a maximum length of 9-24 months. The employee’s rights and obligations are the same as in the case of a permanent employment agreement.

Employee's rights in France

All employees who sign employment contracts in France are entitled to the minimum monthly wage. Usually, workers in France must work 35 hours every week. Variations regarding the employees’ hours of work and overtime can apply and can be negotiated between the employer and the employee.
All employees in France are entitled to paid holidays. In addition to public holidays, French employees may receive a minimum number of five paid holiday weeks every year. Employees are entitled to maternity leave before and after childbirth. The duration varies according to the number of children and the mother’s health during and after birth.
French employees are protected by law against discrimination and harassment. Our French lawyers can help you with more information about the rights of the employees in France.

Taxes for employment in France

All French employers must pay their share of social security contributions that amounts to 43% of the gross salary of the employee. The employee’s social security contribution is 22% of the gross salary. The employer must withhold the employee’s share from the gross monthly salary.
In France, the employment income is taxed according to a progressive tax rate varying from 0 to 45%.
Our lawyers in France can offer you more information about doing business in France. Please contact our law firm in France for a detailed offer.