A seasonal worker is a person who, for a limited period, works for a seasonal operation which is frequently found in the horticultural or agricultural sector. Other sectors, such as tourism and construction, are also included.
Employees placed by an agency to carry out seasonal work are also in this category.
Workers on seasonal work patterns have full access to the employment law provisions and to the terms and conditions of employment that employees are guaranteed under the law in Ireland.
If you are coming to work in Ireland from outside the state there may be particular requirements you must meet. Further information can be found here Coming to Work in Ireland
Terms and conditions of employment
Within five days of commencing employment, an employee must receive a written statement of the five core terms of their employment.
Employees must also receive a full written statement of their terms and conditions of employment within one month of commencing employment.
A full list of what should be included in the terms of employment, together with further information, can be found here Terms of Employment.
Wages and Pay
The National Minimum Wage is the minimum hourly pay rate that employers can legally pay their employees. It applies to full-time, part-time, temporary and seasonal employees. The rates are age related, with the full rate applying to those age 20 or over.
If your employment is covered by an SEO or an ERO you may have an entitlement to a higher rate of pay.
An employee is also entitled to a premium payment for Sunday working.
A written statement of wages (payslip) must be given to every employee with every payment of wages or, if you are paid electronically, as soon as possible after an electronic transfer has taken place.
The legislation sets out the rules around maximum working hours and, also, daily and weekly rest breaks.
In some industries, such as agriculture and tourism, the rest breaks and rest periods may differ. Further information can be found here Working Hours
Right to Disconnect
The Code of Practice on the Right to Disconnect gives all employees the right to switch off from work outside of normal working hours, including the right to not respond immediately to emails, telephone calls or other messages. This ensures a better work-life balance.
The full Code is available to view here Code of practice for employers and employees on the right to disconnect
All employees, whether they are full-time, part-time, temporary or seasonal, earn annual leave and public holiday entitlements from the time they commence employment.
There are minimum statutory entitlements for all employees, including an entitlement to four weeks paid annual leave per leave year for most employees. However, employees’ holiday entitlements are calculated depending on time worked and further information on holiday leave can be found here Annual Leave
In Ireland there are now ten public holidays each year.
From 2023, there will be a new public holiday on the first Monday in February and the first Monday in February each year thereafter, except where 1st February falls on a Friday in which case that Friday 1st February will be the public holiday.
While full-time workers have an immediate entitlement to benefit for public holidays, part-time workers have entitlement to benefit when they have worked a total of 40 hours in the previous 5 weeks.
The list of public holidays and further information on your entitlements can be found here Public Holidays
Queries on workplace rights
Tel: 0818 80 80 90
00 353 59 917 8990 (for callers from outside of the Republic of Ireland).
(Opening Hours 09:30 - 13:00 and 14:00 - 17:00 Mon - Fri )
Written queries can be sent to the WRC using our eform
Complaints in relation to employment rights and equality should be made to the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC). Complaints may result in a hearing by an Adjudicator or an inspection by an inspector of the WRC.
Click here for full details on how to make a complaint
Health and Safety
Complaints relating to Health & Safety matters in the workplace should be made to the Health and Safety Authority (HSA).
Tel: 0818 289 389
00 353 01 6147000 (for callers from outside of the Republic of Ireland).
An emergency service outside of standard office hours is operated.
In case of a serious injury/fatality outside of standard business hours (9:00am to 12:30pm), callers can call the 1890 289 389 number where they will be offered a transfer to the Police (Garda Síochána) who will in turn notify a HSA senior inspector.
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We also have information guides in multiple languages.
Other Language Publications - Workplace Relations Commission