This guide was written in collaboration with the SAFEmployment project of Menedék Association.
If you have a question or need help in employment, you can reach Menedék at the +36 20 450 7245 phone number or at [email protected].
In case you need help with a possible case of labour exploitation, don’t hesitate to call the +36 80 625 025 toll-free phone number or write to [email protected].
After you are settled in Hungary, you may be looking for a job to support yourself and your family. It is important to know your labour rights and be aware of potentially dangerous job postings. On this page you can learn about labour rights in Hungary and how to spot shady job offers.
Rights of employees in Hungary
It’s good to know that the Hungarian Labor Code regulates the rights and obligations of all employees and employers in Hungary, regardless of nationality. Under the Labor Code, you have the right to a fair, safe and healthy work environment.
You have the right to receive a minimum wage. If you work full-time (more than 36 hours a week), you cannot make less than HUF 232,000 gross per month. This equals to HUF 53,340 gross per week, HUF 10,670 gross per day, or HUF 1,334 gross per hour.
All workers are entitled to a minimum of 20 days of basic leave per year. In addition, you may be entitled to extra days off depending on your age, the number of children you have, and the type of work you do.
Your employer has a responsibility to ensure that you have a safe and healthy work environment. This includes providing you with adequate protective equipment, frequent sufficient rest periods, an adequate number of colleagues who are not overworked, and a safe physical environment.
If you wish to quit your job, you have the right to do so anytime, in one of three ways: resignation, termination with intermediate effect, or mutual agreement. It’s good to know that in case of resignation, the generally applicable notice period is 30 days, but it can be longer based on the employment contract.
You also have the right to be paid for overtime work. Overtime is work in addition to normal working hours and can only be ordered by the employer in justified cases. The total overtime cannot exceed 250 hours per year and cannot lead to the total number of working hours exceeding 48 hours per week or 12 hours per day. In general, overtime must be paid at a higher rate than your regular wage.
Signs of labour exploitation
Unfortunately some employers are trying to exploit their employees and taking advantage of their vulnerable situation. There are several signs that may indicate that you are experiencing labour exploitation.
Your documents, such as your ID card or passport, have been taken away from you by your employer. Your employer has no right to take away your personal identification.
Your privacy is being violated. Your employer has no right to interfere in your private life and cannot keep you under surveillance. Any tools or techniques used to monitor you in the workplace must not violate your human dignity.
You are not being paid or are being paid less than the amount agreed upon in your contract. The employer is required to pay you the wages stipulated in your contract and cannot deviate from these terms.
You do not have a written employment contract. Your contract must outline your basic salary, job location, and job description at a minimum. The employer is required to employ you according to the terms of the contract.
You are being forced to work overtime against your will. You cannot be forced to work overtime, it can only be imposed in the manner specified in your contract.
You are working in a dangerous or unhealthy workplace. Your employer is required to provide all the necessary conditions, such as protective equipment and sufficient rest periods, for a safe work environment.
If you are experiencing any of these signs of labour exploitation, it is important to seek help from a labour union, legal aid organisation, or the labour inspectorate. Do not be afraid to speak up for your rights as a worker.
How to spot fake or misleading job postings
Fake or misleading job postings can be difficult to spot, but there are some signs that you can look out for to protect yourself. Here are some of the indicators that a job posting may be fake or misleading.
Poor spelling or grammar: Legitimate job postings should be well-written and free of spelling and grammar errors. If the posting contains numerous mistakes, it may be a sign that it is fake.
Vague job description: A fake job posting may have a vague or confusing job description, or it may not provide any details about the job duties or responsibilities.
The schedule seems too flexible: If the job offer seems to have a very flexible schedule or no set schedule at all, it may be a red flag.
No contact information for the recruiter or the company: A legitimate job posting should include the name and contact information of the recruiter or the company. If this information is not provided, it may be a sign that the posting is fake.
Involves movement across borders: Be wary of job postings that require you to travel across borders.
Seems too good to be true: If the job offer seems too good to be true, with a high salary or generous benefits, it may be a scam.
Generic email of the recruiter: A fake job posting may use a generic email address for the recruiter, rather than a specific name or company email.
High pressure and/or emotional tactics: If the recruiter is using high pressure tactics or trying to appeal to your emotions, it may be a sign that the job offer is not legitimate.
Asks for personal information: A legitimate employer should not ask for your personal information, such as your social security number or bank account information, before you have been hired.
Instant job offer: Be cautious of job offers that are made without an interview or any other form of vetting.
Be especially careful with personal assistant or modelling positions, as these types of jobs are often used as cover for human trafficking and other forms of exploitation. Be sure to research the company and seek advice from trusted organisations before accepting any job offer in these positions.
Looking for jobs online safely
Looking for a job online can be a convenient and efficient way to find employment opportunities. However, it is important to be cautious and follow certain steps to ensure that you are not scammed or taken advantage of. Here you can read a few tips on how to look for a job online safely.
It is important to do your research before applying for a job. Look for reviews or ask for references from other employees to get a sense of what it is like to work for the company.
Check the company’s website and social media presence to see if they are professional and active.
If you are unsure about the legitimacy of a job posting, consider seeking help from trusted organisations or locals.
One way to protect yourself from fake job postings is to avoid job offers on Facebook or Telegram, and use official, trusted websites for your job search. These are some of the well known ones in Hungary and neighbouring countries.
When requesting information on a job advertisement, avoid sharing your phone number, and use preferably an email address. Do not share personal information such as a home address or a passport number.
It’s also important to always pay attention to your physical safety: if the recruiter proposes to meet in a remote or isolated location, do not attend the meeting.
In case you need help with a possible case of labour exploitation, don’t hesitate to call the +36 80 625 025 phone number or write to [email protected].