Bordered by Spain and the Atlantic Ocean, Portugal is quickly becoming one of Europe’s most important hubs for startups and tech. With an economy that keeps growing, Portugal is a popular destination for digital nomads and workers at major tech companies, including Microsoft, Amazon, and Google.
In Portugal, the standard hours of work are 8 hours per day, Monday-Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm, or 9:00am-6:00pm with a 1 hour break for lunch.
Portuguese employees are considered night workers when 3 of their weekly working hours are between 10:00pm-7:00am. Night shifts can be no longer than 8 hours per day.
Payment for night workers should be 25% higher minimum wage than daytime workers. This can be offset by either a reduction in work hours or by being paid on a fixed salary.
Female workers are eligible to request full exemption from working between 8:00pm-7:00am if the following apply:
112 days before or after giving birth
During the entire time of breastfeeding
A typical working day should be 8 hours per day, for a total of 40 hours a week or 5 working days. However, employers can put flexible working schemes to extend working hour limitations to 12 hours per day and 60 hours per week for short periods of time.
Reasons employers can extend maximum working hours:
Adaptability, when the employer can extend working hours when there is a need
Under a bank of hours regime, in which the employee can 'bank' time
Under a concentrated working period regime, in which the overtime period is concentrated in 3-4 days per week
Employees are entitled to at least 1 weekly rest day and should receive holiday pay of 1.5x their normal salary if they work on a public holiday.
No matter what the regime is, the average working time should be no longer than 48 hours (with overtime) per week.
Pregnant employees and employees with children under 12 are not required to work overtime. Female employees aren’t required to work overtime during their breastfeeding period if it could harm their health or the health of the children.
Employees can choose to opt-out of working upper-time limits and choose payment in lieu of overtime. Upper-level employees have the option of waving the right to receive additional payments for overtime.
Overtime is only permissible when the company must deal with an increase in work or when needed to help repair economical damages to the company.
Employees are required to work overtime when requested, unless they have requested not to work overtime with the employer.
Employees that work overtime are entitled to:
Hourly rate plus 25% for the first hour after
Hourly rate plus 37.5% for any additional hours after the first hour
Hourly rate plus 50% for overtime on rest days that they were already scheduled to have off
Employees that want to opt-out of working overtime may do so in writing.
Overtime should not be more:
2 hours per day or 48 hours total per week
Than 150 hours of overtime per year for companies with 150 or more employees or more
175 hours per year for companies with less than 50 employees.
The limit can increase to 200 hours in extreme cases of business need (if the company is at the risk of going out of business or may need to lay off employees).
Employees are entitled to a 1-hour lunch break or rest period after working 5 consecutive hours. They must have at least 11 hours of consecutive daily rest off and 24 hours of uninterrupted rest per week.
Employees with either children under the age of 12 or a child with a chronic illness or disability can:
Work part-time for up to 2 years
Work part-time for 3 years, in the case of a 3rd child
Work part-time for 4 years, in the case of having a child with chronic illness or disability
Work on a flexible working regime (a schedule that allows employees to start and stop that differ from a typical 9-5)
Employers are required to keep records of the working time employees work. They have to track working hours either manually or automatically, and should keep the records stored in an accessible location.
On May 14 2019, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) created a law that requires employers in every EU member country to set up an objective, reliable and accessible system to time track employees' working hours. The implementation of such systems and the form they take is up to the member states to determine. The objective is to control how many employees work overtime and the state of their health, and to make sure they are paid accordingly, while not exceeding the maximum hours worked.
Via makes hiring talent around the world and building your global team seamless by helping you onboard workers in as little as 2-3 business days. With our easy-to-use platform, Via helps you manage local HR processes for direct employment such as work visas & permits, employee data privacy compliance, benefits, global payroll, background checks, and more. Our team of local labor lawyers and on-the-ground experts provide 24-hour local support and ensure that your company remains compliant while expanding abroad. As your employer-of-record/entity abroad, Via assumes responsibility for employment liability, so that you can focus on what matters: recruiting and managing your team.