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What are the requirements relating to advertising positions?

No specific regulation exists. When advertising positions, an employer must comply with the rules set forth by Law 4443/2016, which enforces the principle of equal treatment irrespective of race, colour, national or ethnic origin, birth, religion or other belief, disability or chronic illness, age, marital or social status, sexual orientation, identity or gender.

Background checks

What can employers do with regard to background checks and inquiries in relation to the following:

(a) Criminal records?

This issue is addressed in the framework of Law 2472/1997 on the protection of personal data and the protection of an employee’s personal data under Article 57 of the Civil Code. As a criminal record contains sensitive personal data, only the employee concerned has the right to obtain it, with the exception of when the request is necessary for a specific job (eg, money management workers and teachers).

(b) Medical history?

Medical confidentiality applies, alongside the principles of respect for an individual’s rights and the  protection of personal data, as stated above. Τherefore, medical history may be requested only within the context of a person’s job if legally required (eg, in the interests of public safety) or for the person’s safety. All personal data can be used, at any time, only after an employee’s prior informed consent.

(c) Drug screening?

There is no specific legislation on workplace drug testing, though the Personal Data Protection Authority’s code of conduct refers to it. The code of conduct provides that alcohol and drugs testing in the workplace must be:

  • carried out with the prior informed consent of the employees concerned;
  • clearly stated in employment contracts; and
  • form part of an explicit health information, education and rehabilitation policy.

(d) Credit checks?

The financial status of an employee falls under his or her personal data and is thus protected as above.

(e) Immigration status?

The employer is entitled to request a new foreign (ie, non-EU) worker to furnish a copy of his or her passport bearing a type D visa and his or her residence permit for working purposes, or such other special permit (eg, an EU Blue Card, long-term residence permit or permit for management executives).

(f) Social media?

There is no specific legislation on social media. The issue falls within the frame of the protection of personal data.

(g) Other?

Not applicable.

Wages and working time


Is there a national minimum wage and, if so, what is it?

For workers aged 25 years old or above, white-collar workers’ minimum monthly salary is €586.08 and blue-collar workers’ daily wage is €26.16 subject to gradual increases up to a 30% maximum increase, for nine or more years of employment for white-collar workers and 18 or more years of employment for blue-collar workers.

For workers younger than 25 years old, white-collar workers’ minimum monthly salary is €510.95, subject to a 10% increase for three years or more of employment and blue-collar workers’ daily wage is €22.83, subject to gradual increases up to a 10% maximum increase, for six or more years of employment.

Persons over 15 years old who are registered at the unemployment fund for more than 12 consecutive months receive a minimum white-collar salary of €586.08, subject to gradual increases up to a 15% maximum increase, for nine years or more of employment.

In order to determine applicable increases, ‘years of employment’ means the years completed as of February 14 2012 (the date set by the law).

Are there restrictions on working hours?

For a six-day working week, the maximum number of daily work hours is eight and the maximum number of weekly hours is 48.

For a five-day working week, the maximum number of daily work hours is nine and the maximum number of weekly hours is 45.

Therefore, in a standard 40-hour week, an employer can ask for the eight or five hours up to the legal maximum, respectively, as ’overwork’, which is paid an extra 20% per hour. The average working hours for each seven-day period, including overtime, cannot exceed 48 hours during any four-month period, while normal working hours for night workers cannot exceed an average of eight hours in any 24-hour period.

Specific rules apply to:

  • office workers of a public limited company;
  • workers in stores;
  • hotels;
  • shift work;
  • minors; and
  • kitchen staff.

Workers have no flexibility in transferring daily working time between the days of a week or month. In exceptional circumstances, a flexible daily working time may be agreed on for up to six months within any 12-month period, and for up to a maximum of 256 working hours and 32 weeks annually.

Managing executives are exempt from working time restrictions.

Hours and overtime

What are the requirements for meal and rest breaks?

The minimum daily rest is 11 consecutive hours per any 24-hour period; and where the working day is over six hours, a 15-minute rest break is permitted. For each seven-day period, the minimum uninterrupted rest period is 24 hours, which as a rule includes Sunday, plus the aforementioned 11-hours' consecutive rest.

Meal breaks are a minimum of one hour and cannot exceed two hours during winter and three hours during summer. A snack break of up to 30 minutes is also permitted.

How should overtime be calculated?

Overtime is calculated using the daily maximum working time (daily maximum of two additional hours and yearly maximum of 120 additional hours) and is paid by 40% increase per hour. Unlawful overtime is paid by 80% increase.

Overwork (see “Are there restrictions on working hours?”) is not taken into account when calculating overtime.  

The employer is obliged to register in advance any overtime (in addition to any overwork and any changes in the working time) in the information system (ERGANI). Pending issuance of the requisite ministerial decision, the employer should maintain a special book for recording overtime.

What exemptions are there from overtime?

Minors are prohibited from working any overtime.

Working time, overwork and overtime restrictions do not apply to managing executives. Under Greek jurispurdence, the same applies to workers under a simple (ie, non-genuine) on-call agreement.

Is there a minimum paid holiday entitlement?

Every worker who completes 12 months of consecutive employment is entitled to 20 or 24 days’ paid annual leave for a five or six-day working week, respectively. This is increased by one day for each subsequent full year of employment, up to 24 and 26 days, respectively. In case of 10 or more years of employment under the same employer or 12 years under multiple employers, annual leave increases to up to 25 and 30 days, respectively.

Further, from the start of his or her employment until the completion of 12 months’ consecutive employment, every worker is entitled to a percentage of paid annual leave.

What are the rules applicable to final pay and deductions from wages?

Any set-off with counterclaims of the employer is prohibited, except for counterclaims for damages intentionally caused by the worker during work.

Employers must withhold from wages payroll tax (from 22% for annual income up to €20,000 up to 45%), employees’ social security contributions (16%) and special solidarity contributions (from 2.2% up to 10% on the annual income).

Record keeping

What payroll and payment records must be maintained?

At the workplace, staff pay slips must be maintained for at least the previous three months. The special overtime book should also be maintained until the electronic notification to ERGANI is implemented. Every month the employer must file an analytical periodical declaration with all of the necessary wage data to calclulate the social security contributions.

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