The Croatian work environment is similar to that of many European countries. Most companies and professionals ascribe to standard working hours. However, in general, people in Croatia are relatively relaxed about work.
It's not uncommon to find every café in the center of Zagreb full of working professionals, young and old, having coffee with friends and colleagues even in the middle of the afternoon.
An employee may be contracted to work full or part-time. Full-time work should not exceed forty hours a week according to the Zakon o radu (Law on Work), but as in many other countries, professionals often work much more than this. Any employee may work overtime, but should not exceed 32 overtime hours a month or 180 hours per year.
All employees who work at least six hours a day are entitled to a break of at least 30 minutes. Lunch is considered by most to be the important meal of the day, so working professionals often break for lunch.
In any 24-hour period, employees should be granted a rest period of at least twelve consecutive hours. Employees are also entitled to a continuous period of at least 24 hours of rest each week.
Minimum wage is the lowest hourly, daily or monthly salary that employers may legally pay workers. Croatia's minimum wage (minimalna placa), as of March 2013, is 2,814 kunas monthly. This amount has not changed since 2009, but there's a possibility that it will soon increase.
Most jobs are under contract. An employment contract must be in writing and the employee should read and understand all conditions before signing. If it is in a foreign language, a trusted advisor (like a lawyer or financial advisor) who is fluent in that language should inspect it.
A contract also ensures that the employee will be able to contribute to and collect social security and other benefits.
The employer and employee may agree upon a probationary period of up to six months. If the employer decides to dismiss the employee, notice must be given at least seven days in advance.
After the probationary period, it is difficult for an employer to dismiss an employee. The employer must indicate just cause for dismissal, and acceptable terms for dismissal are outlined in the Law on Work (Zakon o radu).
Notice of termination must be given in writing. The notice period depends on how long the employee has been with the company. If an employee has been working with the company for less than a year, the notice period is two weeks. A notice of three months is required for an employee who has been with the same employer for 20 years or more.
During the notice period, the employee is entitled to take four hours per week to seek new employment.
Employees in Croatia are entitled to a paid annual leave of at least four weeks, excluding public holidays. Annual leave may be taken in two parts over the course of the year. An employee may transfer any unused leave to the following year, but it must be used by June 30.
Additionally, employees are entitled to up to seven days of paid leave annually for important personal reasons such as marriage, childbirth, or serious illness or death in the immediate family.
Public holidays in Croatia are:
Most government offices and private business are closed on public holidays. Additionally, citizens who celebrate other religious holidays retain the right not to work on those days.
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