July 23, 2024

Collective Bargaining

In our country, working conditions (namely pay and working conditions) are agreed by the contracting parties (workers and employers’ trade union organizations, of the sector/ occupation, enterprise,) and are set after direct negotiations between them, by signing the relevant Labour Collective Agreements (LCAs). In case the negotiations fail, the parties may have recourse to the Organization of Mediation and Arbitration for mediation/ arbitration services. In case an arbitration award is issued, this is equal to and has the same effect as the LCAs (§6c, Article 15, Law 1876/1990).

The subject of the bargaining (and therefore content) of each Labour Collective Agreement, according to Article 2 of Law 1876/1990, is inter alia the minimum wage amount, the various allowances and the working hours for each sector or enterprise or workers’ specialty that each LCA concerns. The bargaining limit is set by the relevant each time provisions in force as regards the minimum wage and salary, being the remuneration threshold that can be agreed between employers and workers.

In accordance with Article 8 of Law 1876/1990 as amended and in force today, Labour Collective Agreements and Arbitration Awards having the same effect (Article 16 of Law 1876/1990), are binding upon workers and employers who are in dispute or are members of contracting trade unions of the sector or occupation, within their local, occupational and temporal scope, unless these are declared universally binding, by decision of the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, in conformity with the provisions of paragraph 2 of Article 11 of Law 1876/1990 as in force.

In those cases where the employer is bound by an enterprise-level labour collective arrangement, its regulatory terms govern all workers of the enterprise (Article 8 §3 of Law 1876/1990 as in force) and if the employment relationship is regulated by more than one labour collective agreements in force, the provisions on concurrent implementation shall apply (Article 10, Law 1876/1990 as in force).

The terms of individual employment contracts which derogate from the regulatory terms of Labour Collective Agreements are more prevalent if they provide greater protection to workers (Article 7§2 Law 1876/1990).

Relevant Legislation

  • Law 1876/1990 (GG A’ 27), as in force
  • Cabinet Decree 6/2012 (GG A’ 38)
  • Law 4093/2012 (GG A’ 222) as in force
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