Employment Contracts in Bulgaria

Just hired, or looking for work? Find out about employment contracts, including benefits and legal requirements...

The Bulgarian Labour Codex (?????? ?? ?????) distinguishes between two types of employment contracts:

  • Temporary employment contract (?????? ?????? ???????)
  • Permanent employment contract (????????? ?????? ???????)

An employment contract is only legally valid if it is in writing.

Temporary employment contracts

Temporary contracts are fixed-term contracts for a specific duration of employment. These are used in case of seasonal, temporary or short-term work or activities. There is no minimum period for this type of contract, but it cannot last for more than three years. The employee’s rights and obligations are the same as those of a permanent employment contract.

A fixed-term job contract may be used in the following situations:

  • For an employment period not longer than three years
  • For employment until the completion of a specified job
  • To replace an employee who is on a legal leave from work, for example maternity leave or sick leave
  • As a temporary replacement for a position that is filled through an official, competitive, entry examination, for example the replacement of a head teacher
  • For a certain mandate, for example elected MPs

The legal notice period for ending this type of contract is three months, but no longer than the rest of the fixed-term contract. A fixed term contract becomes indefinite if the employee continues to work for five days following expiry of the contract, without any objections from the employer in writing.

Permanent employment contracts

Permanent contracts are those with no end-date. Usually employment begins with a trial period contract (?????? ??????? ??? ???? ?? ?????????), which can not be longer than six months. During the trial period the obligations of both parties are the same as if a permanent contract is signed.

The legal notice for ending a permanent employment contract is 30 days, but may be shorter if the employer and employee agree. Notice should be made in writing.

What an employment contract should include

The contract must be in writing and concluded before the employee starts work. Within a three-day period the employer must send a notification of the contract to the National Revenue Agency (NRA). The employee receives a copy of the work contract and a copy of the notification to the NRA.

It should contain the following:

  • Names of both the employer and the employee
  • Description of the workplace
  • The job title and description
  • The type of contact and the end date of the contract (if applicable)
  • Length of the trial period
  • Annual leave (minimum 20 days per year) and any other additional paid leave
  • The employee’s salary
  • The hours and days to be worked

Additional information may be included, for example a confidentiality clause.

Further Information

  • Information on job contracts from EURES: Click here