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Spanish is spoken by more than 570 million people worldwide, ranks second only to Mandarin Chinese in terms of speakers. Spanish serves as an official language in Spain, numerous Latin American countries, and Equatorial Guinea, with a total of 21 nations using it as a daily means of communication.
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Spain has a well-educated and skilled workforce, particularly in industries like tourism, technology, healthcare, and finance. You can find professionals with expertise in various fields. Many Spaniards are bilingual or multilingual, with proficiency in English, French, and other languages. This can be beneficial for businesses with international clientele or operations.
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In Spain, the minimum wage is established through collective bargaining agreements that are tailored to individual industry sectors. Typically, the minimum wage in the country amounts to approximately 1,080 EUR per month, paid in 14 instalments throughout the year.
Standard Working Hours
In Spain, the standard work week is limited to 40 hours. The typical Spanish working day starts around 8:30-9:00 am, lasts until approximately 2:00 pm, and then takes a siesta break. The work hours resume from 4:00-5:00 pm and continue until around 8:00 pm. The work week is generally Monday – Friday. The law also ensures there is a minimum of twelve hours rest between working days.
Any work exceeding the standard 40-hour work week qualifies as overtime and is subject to regulation through employment contracts or collective agreements.
In Spain, the payroll frequency is monthly and paid typically on the last day of the month. 13th and 14th-month salary payments are mandatory in Spain. It is common practice for the annual salary to be split into 14 instalments to account for the double salary payment, which the employer will pay in July and December; this is specified in the employee’s employment contract and collective agreements.
Paid time off
In Spain, employees are entitled to 30 calendar days of paid annual leave each year, which equates to 22 business days.
In the event of illness or a personal accident, employees are entitled to receive temporary disability benefits as sick pay, amounting to a minimum of 60% of their regular salary.
– For the first 1 to 3 days, there is no obligation for the employer to pay sick pay unless agreed upon or specified in the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).
– From the 4th to the 15th day, the employee is entitled to receive 60% of their contributions base, paid by the employer.
– From the 16th to the 20th day, the employee is entitled to receive 60% of their contributions base, which is paid by the Social Security, even if the employer covers the payment on behalf of the Social Security.
– After 21 days, the employee is entitled to receive 75% of their contributions base, paid by the Social Security, even if the employer covers the payment on behalf of the Social Security.
Maternity leave in Spain consists of 16 weeks paid leave at 100% full pay, funded by the social security system. It is a requirement that 6 of those weeks must be taken after the birth. In order to be eligible for the state paid leave, any employee over 26 years old must have worked over 180 days in the last seven years at any employer.
The father is entitled to 16 days of paid paternity leave (extended to 18 weeks for multiple births).
Termination of Employment
The process of termination differs depending on the existing Employment Agreement and Collective Agreement, and it is dependent upon the type of contract and the grounds for termination. The employer must provide written notice to the employee stating the reasons for the dismissal. Reasons for termination include employee misconduct, objective reasons and collective lay off. The employer is obligated to offer remuneration equivalent to 20 days’ salary per year of service, payable upon the presentation of written notice, with a cap at a maximum of 12 months’ salary.
In Spain, the notice periods for termination of employment contracts vary depending on the type of contract and the circumstances of termination. For permanent contracts, whether initiated by the employer or employee, the standard notice period is typically 15 calendar days. In the case of temporary contracts, the notice period is usually equal to the remaining duration of the contract.
For collective dismissals, which involve layoffs affecting a certain number of employees within a specific period, the notice period can range from 15 days to 90 days, depending on the number of employees affected and the reasons for the dismissal.
The maximum length of a probationary period is 8 months. Collective bargaining agreements also play a role here.
Employees must personally apply for the work visa, ensuring that their applications are submitted at least 90 days before their intended travel date.
For highly skilled roles or non-EU candidates, employers must seek a work visa from the Ministry of Labour before finalising the appointment. Following the Ministry of Labour’s approval, the Embassy or Consulate will issue the work and residence visa.
In Spain, a specific Work Visa category exists for seasonal workers, although the visa application process remains unchanged. Seasonal workers are required to provide evidence of arranged accommodations, covered travel expenses, and a commitment to return to their home country after completing the job.
The standard rate of VAT in Spain is 21%.