Employment Contracts in Russia

Understand employment contracts used by employers in Russia…

An employment contract (trudovye dogovory / трудовые договоры) for any type of employment (full-time, part-time, temporary or permanent) must always be in writing, with two original copies signed by both parties, and one kept by each party. If in exceptional cases a company admits an employee without a written contract, a contract should be prepared and signed within three days of admission.

All contracts must be in both Russian and English to be accepted by a Russian court, and usually contain the following:

  • Name and contact details for the employer and the employee
  • Details of the position
  • Start date
  • Probation period
  • Salary and method of payment
  • Working hours
  • Holiday allowance
  • Social insurance and/or health care arrangements
  • Training and obligations for the employee
  • Work conditions
  • Confidentiality agreements, where relevant
  • Rights and obligations of both parties

According to the Russian Labour Code, there are a number of main types of employment contracts for foreign nationals with a work visa:

  • Employment Contract according to Form TD-1рудовой договор по форме ТД-1) or Employment Contract with Free Text (или Трудовой договор в свободной форме) – this is the most commonly used contract with no definite term of validity, and it must contain the conditions of termination in the body text
  • Employment Contract with Definite Time (Срочный трудовой договор) – this cannot be for more than five years and is usually made when a temporary employee is upgraded to a permanent contract
  • Employment Contract for Seasonal Work (Трудовой договор на сезонные работы) – which cannot have more than two months validity