Employment contract for an indefinite period of time

A contract for an indefinite period of time is one of the most basic and common types of the employment contract in Poland.

A contract of that kind is distinguished by the fact that it does not indicate an exact date by which it is going to last and there are no contractual limitations on its duration.

Important practical aspects to remember about the employment contract for an indefinite period of time:

  • the duration of the contract is not limited in advance;
  • the contract may be terminated by notice by the employee or the employer, but the employer must indicate the reason(s) for termination (the employee has no such duty) and observe several other procedural requirements;
  • for these reasons a contract for an indefinite period of time is considered to provide broader protection from termination and greater stability of employment than other kinds of employment contracts;
  • due to the “default” character of the contract an employment contract without a clause on its duration is likely to be presumed, in light of the Supreme Court’s rulings, a contract for an indefinite period of time.
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Employment contract for a trial period

The employment contract for a trial period – as the name suggest – is a contract to try out the employee (or the employer :-))

The contract for a trial period may come before any other type of the employment contract. “It may” means that the parties have an option to go for a trial period at the beginning of their cooperation but they do not have to: there is no statutory obligation to do so and another type of contract can be implemented forthwith, whatever suits the parties.

Important practical aspects of a trial period employment contract to remember:

  • the length of the trial period may be determined freely by the parties (in days, weeks or months), irrespective of the kind of work, position or other, provided that it is kept within the statutory limit of 3 months – that limit may not be extended even if both parties agree;
  • pursuant to a Supreme Court ruling, an employment contract for a trial period exceeding 3 months may be considered, upon lapse of 3 months, a contract concluded for a definite period of time;
  • the employment contract for a trial period may be concluded only once with the same employee;
  • the employer is not duty bound to continue employment with the employee whose trial period has come to an end, even if the employee’s performance was satisfactory;
  • the employment contract for a trial period may be terminated by notice, duration of which depends on the length of the trial period.

Are trial employment contracts practised in your home countries? Please drop a few words on that.