Ireland (also known as the Republic of Ireland) is a country in northern Europe that lies on the 2nd-largest island in the British isles. The island is geopolitically split between the Republic of Ireland which is about 80% of the island, and Northern Ireland which is part of the United Kingdom. Ireland is a developed country and its quality of life is ranked one of the highest in the world.
Pregnant employees are entitled to 26 weeks of paid maternity leave, and can receive an additional 16 weeks of unpaid leave beginning immediately after the maternity leave. Pregnant employees must take at least 2 weeks of their leave before the due date, and at least 4 weeks after the birth. The pay during this leave depends on whether the employee has contributed enough to social insurance (PRSI), and employers are not required to pay.
Fathers are also entitled to 7 weeks of paid paternity leave that can begin any time in the 6 months after the birth or adoption. The employee can qualify for payment during this time if they have contributed enough to social insurance (PRSI), and employers are not required to pay.
Parents can also take up to 26 weeks of parental leave for each child under 12 years old, as long as they have been employed at their company for at least 1 year. Adoption leave allows 1 adoptive parent to take 24 weeks of unpaid leave.
Ireland has officially instated a sick leave entitlement for the first time in 2023. This is starting as 3 days per year in 2023 and gradually phasing up over a four-year period up to 10 days in 2026, to help employers manage the costs. The pay for these sick days will be 70% of the regular wages, up to EUR 110 per day.
There are 9 public holidays in Ireland, and employees are entitled to at least 4 weeks of paid time off each year. Employees can also request leave for bereavement or civic duty.
The national minimum wage in Ireland is EUR 11.30 per hour for adults over 20 years old. A workweek lasts 39 hours and cannot exceed 48 hours/week on average over 4 months. Overtime is regulated by contracts and collective agreements, and there is no statutory requirement for overtime pay.
Employers can terminate a contract for reasons related to business, personal, or workers misconduct. Termination requires notice and a written explanation. If the cause of termination is misconduct, the employee needs to be given a warning and a chance to explain their actions.
The notice period required depends on how long the employee worked at the company, and payment can be made in lieu of notice.
While employers are not required to pay severance to employees who have been terminated, when an employee is terminated due to redundancy they are eligible to receive between 2-11 weeks of severance pay.
★ 11.05% - Social Security (PRSI)
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Unlike full-time employees, contractors work on projects with multiple companies at a given time and are technically self-employed. Full-time employees are solely focused on their employer and usually receive benefits (such as health insurance, equity or stock options, and time off) as an additional form of compensation. While it can be cheaper to work with international contractors instead of paying benefits to a full-time employee, you run the risk of misclassification. It's recommended to work with an EOR for contractor onboarding and payments, so you can know that your international contractors are paid compliantly and on time.