Starting a New Job


Information on possible allowances can be found in the chapter "Aid for Employees"German text at the German website of

Labour Contracts

In a labour contract [Arbeitsvertrag], also known as a service contract [Dienstvertrag], an employee undertakes to perform certain work for his or her employer under fixed framework conditions.

Future employees should always find out about their rights and duties in the company by asking their future employer before concluding an employment relationship.

A labour contract can be concluded either in written form, verbally or by conclusive behaviour (work performed).

Written labour contracts must be signed by the employee and the employer.

The entire written labour contract, including the rights and duties in the employment relationship, should be read before signing it! In case of doubt it can be checked by the chamber of labour [Arbeiterkammer]. Advice by its experts is available free of charge. They can check whether the labour contract includes shortcomings or anything that is against the law.

In case an employer does not deliver a written labour contract, he or she is obliged to hand out a written note to the employee immediately after employment has commenced outlining the fundamental rights and duties determined in the contract. This note is called service note [Dienstzettel].

Further information on the topic of service contracts/service notesGerman text can be found on the German website at  

Adolescents who have completed compulsory schoolingGerman text are allowed to start an apprenticeship [Lehre] or a compulsory internship with the consent of their legal representative even before the age of 15. All other sorts of employment relationships (e.g. summer jobsGerman text) may be concluded only after a person's 15th birthday.

Probationary Period

Employers and employees can agree upon a probationary period for the start of the employment relationship. During this period the employment relationship can be terminated at any time without explicit reasons and without having to comply with terms or dates. The law stipulates a limit of a month for probationary periods in employment relationships. However, in apprenticeshipsGerman text the first three months count as probationary period. 

Information on the topic of termination during a probationary periodGerman text can be found on the German website at

Working Hours

In Austrian law the normal working hours consist of eight hours per day and 40 hours per week. However, collective agreementsGerman text in many branches and businesses allow for a lesser number of working hours a week (e.g. 38,5 hours). Working hours in full-time employment that exceed this sum are referred to either as additional hours [Mehrstunden] (when exceeding the working-hour limits stipulated in the collective agreement) or as overtime [Überstunden] (when exceeding the legally stipulated limit).

Further information on the topic of working hoursGerman text can be found on the German website at A chapter concerning the working hours of adolescentsGerman text for questions in detail is also available there.

Holiday Entitlement

Employees in Austria are generally entitled to 25 working days [Arbeitstage] or 30 weekdays [Werktage] of holidays a year, depending on whether a five-day week or a six-day week is worked.

Adolescents under the age of 18 are entitled to at least two weeks of holidays during summer (between 15 June and 15 September).

Employees should inform their employer about their holiday plans in time as holidays must be coordinated and agreed upon between them.

Detailed information on the topic of holidaysGerman text can be found on the German website at

Last update: 17.02.2020
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Approved by
Federal Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection
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