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Labor law in Spain.

Learn about employment law in Spain thanks to Horizons’ up-to-date guide.

Horizons is where real, local hiring expertise meets world-class customer service. Quickly and compliantly hire employees in more than 150 countries worldwide, without the need to open a local entity.

Labor law in Spain – Overview

Employer-employee relationships in Spain are governed by various labor laws. Some of the most important relate to probation periods, mandatory notice periods, terminations, and severance. In Spanish, the employment laws are called Guía Laboral, and the Workers’ Statute is known as the Estatuto de los Trabajadores.

The following guidelines apply to workers on indefinite-term employment contracts (by far the most common type of contract in Spain).

Notice period laws in Spain

A minimum notice period of 15 days must be given upon dismissal outside of probation periods. However, standard practice is to provide up to 30 days of notice.

For resignations, employees outside of their probation period must also provide a minimum of 15 days of notice. In practice, up to three months is considered normal.

During probation, there is no notice requirement for either dismissal or resignation.

Severance laws in Spain

In the case of fair dismissal, employees are entitled to a minimum of 20 days’ salary per year of service, up to a maximum of 12 months of salary.

In cases of unfair dismissal, employees are entitled to a minimum of 33 days of salary per year of service, up to a maximum of 24 months of salary.

We recommend paying severance to employees in any case of termination, regardless of circumstances.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ):

You can certainly terminate an employee in Spain during their probationary period. There is no notice required during the probationary period.

Employees in Spain can resign during the probationary period with no notice required.

After the probationary period, employees and employers must provide 15 calendar days’ notice when terminating employment. It is possible to provide payment in lieu of notice.

The maximum notice of employment termination that an employer can give is 30 days; the maximum notice an employee can give when resigning is 3 months.  

The process for an employer to terminate employment can be found here.

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