The Labor Code defines the rules regarding the rights and obligations of employers, aiming to ensure the protection of workers’ rights. If an employer violates your rights, for example, by not paying your salary, you can leave the job without adhering to the notice period. Moreover, you are entitled to compensation equivalent to your salary for this period. The Labor Code contains a list of offenses against employee rights. Here are the most serious ones:
- Lack of appropriate employee documentation.
- Failure to grant due leaves or unjustifiably shortening them.
- Employing based on civil law contracts when an employment contract is required.
- Violating rules related to working hours or parental rights of employees.
- Lack of written confirmation of the employment contract.
- Improper procedures when terminating an employment contract.
- Applying penalties against employees that are not foreseen by law.
- Delays in payments or making unjustified deductions.
- Failing to provide a work certificate after ending cooperation.
- Neglecting safety and hygiene work standards.
- Not informing relevant authorities about changes in operations that can affect employees’ health.
For the aforementioned violations, employers risk a fine ranging from 1,000 to 30,000 zlotys. The decision to impose such a fine is made by the district court based on the labor inspector’s application. The inspector also has the authority to impose penalty tickets or order the rectification of violations. In the case of repeated offenses, the fine can increase.
One of the most frequently violated rights is the timeliness of salary payment. This is a key employee right that is strictly protected. Salaries should be paid regularly, no later than the 10th day of each month. If an employee has doubts about their salary, the employer is obliged to provide the necessary documents. Not paying salaries on time, reducing them without justification, or making unjustified deductions are offenses. You can report these to the National Labor Inspectorate, which is obliged to protect your anonymity unless you decide otherwise.
Another issue is entering into civil law contracts where an employment contract is required. What’s decisive is the nature of the cooperation, not the formal definition of the contract. If you work at a specific place and time and your work is supervised, it is referred to as an employment relationship. This means that the employer is obliged to employ you under an employment contract, not a civil law contract. Even if your contract is a commission contract, in such a situation, the Labor Code provisions apply to you.
Art. 281 [Catalogue of offences against employee rights] Labour Code