Comparative Guides
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Results: 4 Answers
Labour and Employment
3.
Employment benefits
3.1
Is there a national minimum wage that must be adhered to?
 
Italy
Italian law does not provide for a mandatory minimum wage.

This is generally set forth on a sector-by-sector basis by national collective bargaining agreements, which specify different minimum wages depending on the qualifications and level (eg, executive, middle manager, white collar or blue collar) of the employee.

If no national collective bargaining agreement applies (under Italian law, except in certain limited cases, there is no obligation that employment relationships be governed by a national collective bargaining agreement), reference must be made to Section 36 of the Italian Constitution, which sets forth the principles of proportionality and sufficiency, to which workers’ remuneration must adhere.

‘Proportionality’ means that the amount of remuneration must be quantified taking into account, in addition to the work performed, the quality of performance in terms of difficulty, importance and complexity, as well as the responsibilities associated therewith.

‘Sufficiency’ means that the worker must be granted a wage which is sufficient to meet his or her needs and those of his or her family.

If no national collective bargaining agreement applies, the assessment as to the proportionality and sufficiency of the salary granted to an employee according to Section 36 of the Italian Constitution is carried out by the labour court, taking into account the minimum wages established under any national collective bargaining agreement applicable in the sector in which the employer operates.

For more information about this answer please contact: from Grimaldi Studio Legale
3.2
Is there an entitlement to payment for overtime?
 
Italy
According to Section 2108, paragraph 1 of the Italian Civil Code, in case of performance in excess of ordinary working time, employees must be compensated for overtime in the form of remuneration at a rate that is higher than that payable for ordinary work.

For a long time, the rules on working time were set forth by Royal Law Decree 692/1923. Section 1 of this law decree fixed the maximum duration of regular working time at eight hours per day and 48 hours per week. Section 5 further set the maximum limits for overtime at two hours per day and 12 hours per week.

Legislative Decree 66/2003 has since replaced the regulations on regular working hours and overtime, implementing EU Directives 93/104/EC and 2000/34/EC, respectively. According to Legislative Decree 66/2003, collective bargaining agreements should regulate the main aspects of this matter. However, it further provides that:

  • recourse to overtime must be limited;
  • if no provisions on overtime are set out in the applicable national collective bargaining agreement, overtime is allowed, conditional on agreement between the employer and the employee, up to a maximum cap of 250 hours per year; and
  • in the absence of a national collective bargaining agreement, overtime is permitted in case of exceptional technical or production-related needs, force majeure or special events such as fairs (in this event, information obligations apply).

Generally speaking, national collective bargaining agreements provide a maximum yearly threshold for overtime and establish pay increases to which employees performing overtime are entitled.

For more information about this answer please contact: from Grimaldi Studio Legale
3.3
Is there an entitlement to annual leave? If so, what is the minimum that employees are entitled to receive?
 
Italy
Section 36 of the Italian Constitution provides that “employees are entitled to… annual paid leave and cannot waive such right”.

According to Section 2109 of the Italian Civil Code, employees are entitled to annual paid leave for a term set forth by law, by practice or by the application of a fairness criterion.

Legislative Decree 66/2003 specifies that, save for that set forth by Section 2109 of the Italian Civil Code, employees are entitled to at least four weeks’ annual paid leave. Unless the applicable national collective bargaining agreement provides otherwise, two of those four weeks must be taken in the year in which they accrue; the remaining two weeks may be taken in the following 18 months. Annual leave must be taken by employees; payment in lieu is not possible, unless the employment relationship is terminated.

Generally speaking, applicable national collective bargaining agreements (if any – under Italian law, except in certain limited cases, there is no obligation that employment relationships be governed by a collective agreement) provide for annual leave for a term which is longer than the minimum four weeks specified under Italian law.

Employees are further entitled to the following bank holidays.

Bank holiday Date
New Year’s Eve 1 January
Epiphany 6 January
Easter Sunday -
Easter Monday -
Liberation Day 25 April
Workers’ Day 1 May
National Day 2 June
Feast of the Assumption 15 August
All Saints Day 1 November
Feast of the Immaculate Conception 8 December
Christmas Day 25 December
St Stephen’s Day 26 December
For more information about this answer please contact: from Grimaldi Studio Legale
3.4
Is there a requirement to provide sick leave? If so, what is the minimum that employees are entitled to receive?
 
Italy
According to Section 2110, paragraph 1 of the Italian Civil Code, in case of accident, illness, pregnancy or puerperium, if there are no legal provisions setting forth equivalent forms of social security, employees are entitled to the payment of remuneration or of an indemnity whose amount and term for payment are specified by law, by practice or by applying a fairness criterion.

Except for certain cases (eg, executive status employees), this indemnity is paid by the Italian Social Security Authority (Istituto nazionale della previdenza sociale (INPS)) or by the Italian Mandatory Insurance against Accidents at Work, depending on why the employee is absent from work.

Section 2110, paragraph 2 entitles the employer to terminate the employment contract if an employee’s absence from work for any of the reasons outlined above exceeds the maximum term set forth by law, by practice or by applying a fairness criterion.

Generally speaking, this maximum term is set forth by the applicable national collective bargaining agreement (if any – under Italian law, except in limited cases, there is no obligation that employment relationships be governed by a national collective bargaining agreement), and varies according to the employee’s seniority.

Section 2110, paragraph 3 clarifies that the term for which employees are absent from work for any of the reasons outlined above must be taken into account when quantifying seniority.

For more information about this answer please contact: from Grimaldi Studio Legale
3.5
Is there a statutory retirement age? If so, what is it?
 
Italy
Pursuant to amendments introduced to the Italian pension system by Legislative Decree 201/2011 (converted into law by Law 214/2011), employees (either male or female) aged 67 (increased from 66 years and seven months as of 1 January 2019) who have made social security payments for at least 20 years qualify for a pension paid by the INPS.

Alternatively, the following employees may take early retirement at a reduced pension rate:

  • male employees who have made social security payments for 43 years and three months (increased from 42 years and 10 months as of 1 January 2019), regardless of their age; and
  • female employees who have made social security payments for 42 years and 3 months (increased from 41 years and 10 months as of 1 January 2019), regardless of their age.

Two other ways to retire are through:

  • the voluntary pension advance (anticipo pensionistico volontario – APE volontario);
  • the early temporary supplementary income (rendita integrativa temporanea anticipata – RITA); and
  • the so-called ‘100 quote’ formula.

The APE volontario is a bank loan paid by the INPS to an employee who satisfies the following criteria at the time of making the request:

  • is at least 63 years of age;
  • will qualify for the standard pension within three years and six months;
  • has made at least 20 years of social seniority payments; and
  • does not have a disability pension.

The bank loan must be repaid by the employee with a 20-year levy on his or her future pension rate.

Employees who satisfy the following criteria can retire under RITA:

  • is no longer in employment;
  • will qualify for the standard pension within five years;
  • has made at least 20 years of social security payments at the time of the application; and
  • at the time of application, has been enrolled in and contributed to a provident pension fund for at least five years.

Or alternatively:

  • is no longer in employment;
  • has been unemployed after leaving work for more than 24 months;
  • will qualify for the standard pension within 10 years; and
  • at the time of application, has been enrolled in and contributed to a provident pension fund for at least five years.

The APE volontario and RITA constitute supplemental income pending retirement and recipients must be enrolled in a provident pension fund.

Pursuant to amendments recently introduced to the Italian pension system, employees are moreover entitled to take retirement under the so-called ‘100 quote’ formula, which gives a special opportunity to retire to employees who are at least 62 years old and have made at least 38 years of social seniority payments.

For more information about this answer please contact: from Grimaldi Studio Legale