Last updated on: April 4th, 2023
The Labor Law in France is regulated mainly by the Labor Code (Code du Travail) of 2016 (amended as of 2021). The Labor Code governs the terms and conditions of employment such as working hours, holidays and rest periods, wages, overtime, and employment relationships. The employment relationship is also governed by an array of collective bargaining agreements and judicial precedents.
The Labor Law defines part-time employees (Article L3123-1) as, ‘an employee whose working time is less than the legal working time, or less than the working time fixed by agreement for the branch or company, or to the working time applicable in the establishment and shall be mentioned in their employment contract.’
Hours & Pay Regulations
Part-time employees are entitled to annual leave the same as full-time employees. However, the duration of annual leave will be calculated based on the number of hours worked.
The minimum annual leave entitlement for part-time employees is proportional to the hours worked during the year. The legal minimum is 2.5 working days per month worked, which equates to a total of 30 days for a full-time employee working 5 days a week. Working days are days that do not include statutory holidays and weekly rest days.
So, if a part-time employee works 50% of a full-time schedule (i.e., 2.5 days per week), they will be entitled to 15 days of annual leave per year (2.5 days x 6 months).
Example 1: A part-time employee works 25 hours per week for 46 weeks during the previous year. The total number of hours worked is 1,150. To calculate the annual leave entitlement, multiply 1,150 by 10%, which equals 115 hours of paid annual leave. If the hourly rate of pay is €12, then the employee would receive €1,380 for their annual leave (115 hours x €12 per hour).
Example 2: A part-time employee works 15 hours per week for 50 weeks during the previous year. The total number of hours worked is 750. To calculate the annual leave entitlement, you would multiply 750 by 10%, which equals 75 hours of paid annual leave. If the hourly rate of pay is €8, then the employee would receive €600 for their annual leave (75 hours x €8 per hour).
[Statutory entitlement for paid annual leave for full-time employees is 2.5 working days per month worked which represents approximately 10% of the total number of working days in a year]
Termination of employment – In case of termination of employment, the employee shall be entitled to receive a compulsory leave allowance for the amount of annual leave not taken by the employee. This is also applicable to the beneficiaries of the employee whose death occurs before they could not take their annual leave. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3141-1 to L3141-33.
Effective August 1, 2022, the minimum hourly gross wage is €11.06, which thus puts the minimum monthly salary at €1,329.06.
Part-time employees are entitled to sick leave like full-time employees. The amount of sick leave that a part-time employee is entitled to depend on the number of hours they work per week. (pro-rated based on their actual working hours). Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1226-1 to L1226-24.
Part-time employees are entitled to maternity leave under certain conditions such as an employee must be registered with the French social security system and have worked at least 150 hours in the 3 months preceding the start of their maternity leave.
The duration of maternity leave for part-time employees is calculated based on the number of hours worked per week. The employee is entitled to the same amount of leave as a full-time employee, which is currently 16 weeks, but the weekly allowance is calculated based on the number of hours worked.
For example, if a full-time employee is entitled to 16 weeks of maternity leave, a part-time employee working 20 hours per week would be entitled to 16 weeks of leave at 50% pay (i.e., 20 hours per week out of 40 standard hours in a week), or 8 weeks of leave at full pay (i.e., 16 weeks x 20 hours per week out of 40 standard hours in a week).
During maternity leave, the employee is entitled to receive a daily allowance from the French social security system, which is calculated based on their salary and the number of children they have. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1225-1 to L1225-34.
Parental leave is available to all employees, including part-time employees. The amount of parental leave available to a part-time employees will depend on their working hours and the amount of time they have worked for their employer. Employees are entitled to take up to 1 year of parental leave per child, which can be extended up to 3 years in certain circumstances. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1225-62 – L1225-65.
Paternity leave and parental leave (which includes childcare leave) are available to both full-time and part-time employees. The leave consists of a period of 4 consecutive calendar days, immediately following the birth leave, and a period of 28 calendar days in the event of multiple births. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1225-35 to L1225-36.
Article L3123-5- ‘A part-time employee benefits from the rights recognized as a full-time employee by law, conventions and company or establishment agreements subject to, with regard to contractual rights, specific terms, and conditions provided for by a convention or collective agreement’.
Adoption Leave- An employee is entitled to 16 weeks of leave and 18 weeks if the employee already has two or more children under their care and then adopts another child. For multiple adoptions of two or more children at the same time, the duration of the adoption leave increases to 22 weeks. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1225-37 – L1225-41.
Leave for Sick Child – An employee is entitled to an unpaid leave of 3 days per year in the event of illness or accident confirmed by a medical certificate of a child under the age of 16 who is under the care of the employee. However, the leave duration is increased to 5 days if the child is under the age of 1 or if the employee is responsible for 3 or more children under the age of 16. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1225-61.
Business Creation Leave – An employee who sets up or takes over a business is entitled to either an unpaid leave of absence, during the time an employment agreement is suspended or to part-time employment, each for a period of 1 year. The one-year business creation leave may be extended for one additional year. To benefit from this leave of absence, employees must have at least 24 months of service with their employer. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-105 to L3142-124.
Mobility Leave– Employees with at least 2 years of service (whether successive or not) are permitted, with their employer’s consent, to work for a different company for a fixed period. The duration of leave is determined by a collective agreement between the employer and the employee. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L1237-18 – L1237-18-5.
Bereavement Leave – An employee, in the event of the death of a child under the age of 25 or of a person under the age of 25 shall be entitled to bereavement leave of 8 calendar days which may be divided under the conditions as may be provided for by decree. The leave can be taken within 1 year of the child’s death. The allowance for the leave is paid by Social Security. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-1-1.
Family Solidarity Leave – The employee is entitled to unpaid family solidarity leave whose ascendant, a descendant, a brother, a sister, or a person sharing the same domicile suffers from a life-threatening disease or is in the advanced or terminal phase of a serious and incurable disease. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-6 – L3142-15.
Caregiver Leave – An employee is entitled to caregiver leave as per the requirement assisted for full-time employees. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-16 to L3142-27).
Sabbatical Leave – The employee is entitled to a sabbatical leave of 6 months and its maximum duration is 11 months. The qualifying condition for such leave is that the employee must have at least 36 months of service with the employer consecutive or not. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-28 to L3142-35.
Leave for Natural Disasters – The employee residing or usually employed in an area affected by a natural disaster is entitled to leave, taken on one or more occasions, to participate in the activities of organizations providing aid to victims of natural disasters. In the absence of an agreement, the maximum duration of leave is 20 days per year. Labor Code, 2016 (amended as of 2021), Art. L3142-48 to L3142-53.
Part-time employees shall also be entitled to leave benefits such as training leave (for executives and youth leaders, voluntary association leaders, holders of mutualist mandates other than directors and members of citizens’ councils), leave for the acquisition of nationality, leave for employees who are candidates for or elected to a parliamentary or local mandate, and teaching or research leave, etc, same as full-time employees.
- 4 working days paid leave for marriage or for the conclusion of a civil solidarity pact;
- 1 working day of paid leave for the marriage of a child;
- 3 working days paid leave, for each birth. This period of leave begins to run, at the employee’s choice, on the day of the birth of the child or on the first working day that follows;
- 3 working days paid leave for the arrival of a child placed for adoption;
- 5 working days paid leave for the death of a child or 7 working days when the child is under the age of 25 years and regardless of his age if the deceased child was himself a parent or in the event of the death of a child. a person under the age of 25 in his effective and permanent charge;
- 3 working days paid leave for the death of the spouse, the partner bound by a civil solidarity pact, the partner, the father, the mother, the stepfather, the stepmother, a brother or a sister ;
- 2 working days paid leave for the announcement of the occurrence of a handicap in a child.
- 2 working days paid leave for the announcement of the occurrence of a disability, a chronic pathology requiring therapeutic training, or cancer in a child.