Types of work contracts in Spain
When we are looking for a job we don't think about other importants topics that could affect our rights as workers. To avoid that, is very important to have information about types of contract, rights in terms of training, practices or special situations.
In Spain, recent reforms have simplified the procedures for contracts of employment. In this article we review them all, trying to clarify a bit more the complex labour market:
1. Open-ended contract
It is a contract settled without specifying time limit. The Law states that "every contract shall be deemed to have been executed indefinitely and full time unless proof is provided of the temporary or part-time nature of the services. Any contract concluded by fraud and open-ended contracts exceeding the maximum time of temporary recruitment shall be deemed also as open-ended contracts" 1.
This is the main standard contract and the type that pretends to be stimulated more, even though the statistics on employment show that it remains the least used.
There are different specific types of open-ended contracts:
- Permanent seasonal contract. It is an indefinite contract (without a concrete duration) and characteristic of services that, even though are fixed, do not cover the whole year. Therefore, the worker provides his/her services only during several months a year (for example, seasonal works).
- Indefinite employment contract for workers with disabilities. This type of contract is more widely used to differentiate it from the employment of workers who have their full functional capacity. It is foreseen for workers with a minimum degree of disability of a 33% or higher.
- Indefinite contract for supporting entrepreneurs. The idea is to facilitate a steady job and foster entrepreneurial initiatives of firms with at least 50 workers. These contracts are always for an indefinite full-time period. There are certain tax incentives for the firm (deductions on tax rate and Social Security contribution).
2. Training and learning contract
´Its objective is the professional qualification of workers by a system combining in a simultaneous way a paid activity in a firm with a training activity in the framework of the system of vocational training for employment or the educational system´ 2.
This contract is for workers older than sixteen years old and younger than twenty-five, without a professional qualification recognised by the system of vocational training for employment or the education system, establishing a work-experience contract for the position or occupation object of the contract. Age-limit shall not be applied when the contract is established with disabled people or with groups in a situation of social exclusion.
The minimum duration of the contract will be of one year and the maximum of three years (with exceptions) and, after the contract has expired, the work will not be contracted under this approach unless the type of training specified in the new contract aims at obtaining a different professional qualification.
The effective working time, that must be compatible with the time devoted to training activities, will not be more than a 75% during the first year or an 85% during the second and third years of the top of daily working hours. Overtime hours, night works or shift works are forbidden.
Remuneration shall be established considering the effective working time and according to what has been established in the collective agreement, but never can be under the minimum interprofessional wages guaranteed in proportion to the effective working time.
3. Work-experience contract
Its objective is to provide the worker with the adequate work experience related to the studies undertaken by the worker (university degree or vocational training diploma).
No more than five years can elapse from the end of the studies, and the job must allow the worker to obtain the adequate professional training for the studies s/he has carried out.
The duration of the contract cannot be under six months or over two years. Remuneration will be the quantity fixed for trainees and cannot be under a 60% or 75% -during the first or second year of the contract- of the salary fixed by agreement for workers doing the same job or a similar one. The quantity cannot be under the national minimum wage.
4. Contract for works or services
It is a contract established for doing a work or the provision of a service different from the activity of the company. Its implementation, even though limited in time, has, in principle, an unknown duration corresponding with the established time for the implementation of a work or service that cannot last over three years.
It can be a part-time or a full-time contract and, in any case, upon termination of the contract the worker will receive a compensation equivalent to the proportional share of the quantity resulting from paying twelve days of the salary for every year of service.
5. Temporary contract for circumstances of the production
Its aim is to attend the circumstantial requirements of the market, accumulated workload or excess of orders, even being the normal activity of the firm. It has a maximum duration of six months within a twelve-month period, even though it can be extended by collective agreement.
In case the temporary contract is established by a period under the maximum length of time established, it can be extended by agreement of the parties only once, and the total duration cannot overcome the maximum duration.
Full-time and part-time types are accepted and, in any case and once the contract has ended, the worker will receive a compensation equivalent to the proportional share of the quantity resulting from paying twelve days of salary for every year of service.
Apart from the above mentioned types of contract -the most usual- there are other types for more specific situations such as the Hand-Over Contract, the Special Contract for Workers In Risk of Exclusion or the Provisional Contract.
1 RDL 1/1995 of 24 March, approving the revised text of the Workers' Statute is approved.
2 Labor Guide of the Ministry of Employment and Social Security. http://www.empleo.gob.es/es/Guia/
Iván Sanz Burgos and Violeta Pérez Sobreviela
Legal Advice Office for Young People. CIPAJ and University of Zaragoza.
Translation: Francisco Javier García
Sent by Eurodesk Qualified Multiplier, Zaragoza