Which agreements should I reach with my employer before I start working?

If you work legally, the agreements between employer and employee are generally put down on paper, i.e. a written ’employment contract’ or ’employment agreement’. This contains the names of the employer and the employee, the kind of work, the working hours and the wage amount. The contract must be signed by both you and the employer. Don’t lose it!

If you can’t get a written contract, but you’re working for someone in exchange for wages, you have a verbal contract. This is just as valid as a written contract but is more difficult to prove after the fact. A verbal contract is always for an indefinite period, which means that it only officially ends if you are dismissed or leave, according to the correct procedure.

Always try to make clear agreements and see if you can record them some other way. For example, send a message with your telephone, stating the agreements and asking if you have understood them correctly. Or try to record the conversation with the employer. You can find out how to do that on this page. If you have a good relationship with your employer, talk to them about the information on this website. Know that you have rights and ask that they be respected.

Important: Never sign anything (a document/contract) if you do not understand what it says! Ask someone else to read your contract and explain it to you before you sign it. Always ask for a copy of the contract for your own records.