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Employment law overview Austria
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Introduction

Austrian employment law

Austrian employment law can be divided into individual employment law and collective employment law.

Individual employment law regulates the relation between the individual employee and the employer. Collective employment law regulates the collective representation and organisation of employees.

Austrian employment law is not embedded into or regulated by a single labour law code. The sources of Austrian employment law are therefore in several codes, acts, federal law, the respective applicable collective bargaining agreements, works council agreements on a company level, individual employment contracts and instructions.

 

Key Points

  • There are more than 800 collective bargaining agreements in Austria. These are mandatory for employers and are determined by the trade business carried out by the employer. Collective bargaining agreements take precedence over the law if they are more favourable to employees.
  • A distinction is made between blue-collar and white-collar workers. The regulations and collective bargaining agreements applicable to the two groups are partly different, partly the same. There are more and more steps by the legislator into equal treatment of blue-collar and white-collar workers.
  • There is no nationwide minimum wage. Rather, each collective bargaining agreement provides for minimum wages. The applicable minimum wage must be determined separately for each position/each individual depending on the responsibilities and periods of service.
  • There are special courts for employment and social law disputes. Trained judges decide together with lay judges.
  • A works council can be elected in companies with 5 or more employees.
  • Austrians do not strike much compared to other countries.

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