What is overtime?

  • Overtime is working time in excess of the statutory maximum working hours – as a rule, more than 8 hours a day or more than 40 hours a week.
  • Overtime work is always performed at the request of the employer.
  • Even in the absence of a specific request, also work which has been requested by the employer to be performed by a specific deadline, aware of the fact that it cannot be performed by deadline within regular working hours, is considered overtime.
  • For the first daily hours of overtime normal pay is increased by 50% and for the following hours by 100%. Alternatively, an elevated compensatory leave may be offered.
  • Flexitime does not preclude the incurrence of overtime.

Unpaid overtime is lost pay – make sure you are compensated for overtime

Unpaid overtime is a significant problem among business school graduates and other highly educated professionals yet it is often kept silent in public. Unpaid overtime is lost pay which affects, for example, your pension accumulation. Similarly, unpaid overtime reduces all earnings-related benefits such as parental allowance and sickness benefits.

Overtime is rarely recorded as working hours and therefore not compensated.

  • Unpaid overtime is part of the grey economy.
  • Employers are responsible for monitoring working hours and keeping the working hours records up-to-date.
  • Overtime hours must be recorded for the sake of well-being at work and also to be able to lengthen professional careers. Nearly 60% of the highly educated experience, at least from time to time, being close to serious burnout.

What to do if overtime is not compensated?

If your employer has neglected the obligation to keep record of working hours, your own monitoring may be decisive in claiming your outstanding compensation based on the Working Hours Act.

So it’s a good idea to keep record of your own working hours in, for example, an Excel file:

  • At what time did you start work
  • At what time did you finish work
  • What did you do during the day, in general

You can then email your records to your employer on a weekly or monthly basis.

If there are any uncertainties with your working hours, please contact our legal services.