Comparative Guides

Welcome to Mondaq Comparative Guides - your comparative global Q&A guide.

Our Comparative Guides provide an overview of some of the key points of law and practice and allow you to compare regulatory environments and laws across multiple jurisdictions.

Start by selecting your Topic of interest below. Then choose your Regions and finally refine the exact Subjects you are seeking clarity on to view detailed analysis provided by our carefully selected internationally recognised experts.

4. Results: Answers
Labour and Employment
3.
Employment benefits
3.1
Is there a national minimum wage that must be adhered to?
Turkey

Answer ... There is a statutory national minimum wage, which is applicable to all employees.

The national minimum wage is determined by the Minimum Wage Fixing Board. Employers cannot pay their employees salaries which are lower than the national minimum wage.

From 1 January 2020, the national minimum wage is TRY 2.943 gross per month. This monthly amount applies to employees working normal full-time hours for the whole month; employees who work less than full-time hours are entitled to a proportional amount of the monthly minimum wage.

For more information about this answer please contact: Batuhan Sahmay from Bener Law Office
3.2
Is there an entitlement to payment for overtime?
Turkey

Answer ... Yes.

The maximum number of hours that an employee can work each week stands at 45, unless otherwise determined by the employee and employer. If the parties agree, normal weekly working hours may be unequally distributed across the working week. However, employees may not be employed for more than 11 hours per day (including overtime).

Overtime is any work that exceeds 45 hours a week. In cases where balancing is applied, work exceeding 45 hours a week shall not be deemed as overtime as long as the average working hours of the employee do not exceed 45 per week. Balancing occurs during periods when the employer has a heavy workload: with the employees’ consent, the employer may request them to work more than 45 hours per week, as long as it balances their average weekly hours by making them work less within a two-month period, so that their average working hours stays at 45 hours. In such cases weekly work over 45 hours will not be considered overtime. However, balancing cannot be applied for more than two months - although this period can be increased to four months under a collective bargaining agreement.

In cases where the weekly working hours are determined to be less than 45 hours, work that exceeds the average weekly working limit and which lasts only up to 45 hours weekly is regarded as additional working hours.

In cases where the employee’s salary is stated to be inclusive of pay for overtime/additional working hours, the employee will not be entitled to additional pay for overtime of up to 270 hours a year. However, this is valid only for employees who receive a salary that is reasonably higher than the minimum wage.

Workers may be remunerated for overtime/additional working hours through either increased salary or time in lieu. The employee has the right to choose from among these options; the employer has no discretion in this regard.

Salary for each hour of overtime shall be 50% more than the employee’s normal hourly rate.

Salary for each additional working hour shall be 25% more than the employee’s normal hourly rate.

If an employee who has worked overtime or additional working hours so prefers, rather than receiving increased salary, he or she may receive 1.5 hours of time in lieu for each hour of overtime and 1.25 hours of time in lieu for each additional working hour. The employer must grant the employee the time in lieu to which he or she is entitled within six months, within his or her normal working hours and without any deduction to his or her salary.

Pursuant to the Labour Code, overtime cannot exceed 270 hours per year. However, this limit is often exceeded in practice by employers, due to changing business needs.

For more information about this answer please contact: Batuhan Sahmay from Bener Law Office
3.3
Is there an entitlement to annual leave? If so, what is the minimum that employees are entitled to receive?
Turkey

Answer ... Yes. Employees who have completed at least one year of service in the workplace are entitled to paid annual leave. The minimum periods of paid leave are set out in the following table; however, such periods may be extended by the employment contract or a collective bargaining agreement.

Duration of employment Paid annual leave entitlement
1 to 5 years 14 days
Between 5 years and 15 years 20 days
More than 15 years 26 days

In calculating an employee’s entitlement to paid leave, the total period for which he or she has been employed in one or more workplace belonging to the same employer shall be taken into consideration.

Additionally, for employees below the age of 18 and above the age of 50, the length of paid annual leave must not be less than 20 days.

Employees may divide up their paid annual leave over the course of the year, provided that at least 10 days of paid leave are taken consecutively. If an employee can prove that he or she is spending his or her annual leave at a location away from the area where the workplace is situated, the employer must grant the employee, on request, up to four days of unpaid leave to travel there and back.

Other kinds of leave, paid or unpaid, granted by the employer during the year or taken by the employee as recovery and sick leave cannot be deducted from his or her annual leave.

National holidays, week holidays and public holidays which coincide with a period of annual leave are not included in the employee’s paid annual leave.

An employee should, in principle, use all of his or her paid leave in respect of one year of employment in the following year of employment. However, if he or she does not use all or part of this entitlement in the following year, the unused leave entitlement may be carried over and used in the subsequent year or years. The entitlement does not expire until it has been used or the employment is terminated. If the employment is terminated for any reason, the employer must pay the employee in respect of any statutory annual leave entitlement accrued but not yet used. In no other circumstances may an employee exchange his or her statutory annual leave entitlement for financial compensation from the employer.

For more information about this answer please contact: Batuhan Sahmay from Bener Law Office
3.4
Is there a requirement to provide sick leave? If so, what is the minimum that employees are entitled to receive?
Turkey

Answer ... Employers must register their employees with the Social Security Institution (SSI) before commencement of work and make monthly premium payments to the SSI. These premium payments include coverage for injury or illness.

Given this regime, employees cannot seek compensation from their employers in the event of unintentional occupational accidents or illnesses. However, if the employer is at fault, the SSI may seek to recoup some of the costs it incurs in relation to that employee from the employer, in proportion to the degree of fault. In such cases the employee can also seek compensation from the employer to compensate for damages that are not covered by the SSI.

If the employee does not receive a fixed monthly salary, the employer’s obligation to pay his or her salary applies only for the first two days of illness. After the second day of illness, if the employee satisfies the eligibility criteria, the SSI will commence payment temporary incapacity payments to the employee, in the amount of a certain portion of employee’s salary, until the employee returns to work.

If employee is not at work due to a workplace accident or occupational disease, the SSI will commence making temporary incapacity payments as of the first day of absence. Therefore, the employer is not obliged to make any salary payments.

For more information about this answer please contact: Batuhan Sahmay from Bener Law Office
3.5
Is there a statutory retirement age? If so, what is it?
Turkey

Answer ... There is a minimum retirement age, which varies depending on gender, employment commencement date and other related factors. However, employees may continue to work after they have reached the retirement age.

For more information about this answer please contact: Batuhan Sahmay from Bener Law Office
Contributors
Topic
Labour and Employment