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Termination of Employment in Greece

Updated: Nov 17

If you are thinking about moving to Greece, it might help to first do some research. Therefore, this article will give some insights into employment in Greece. It will explain the types, the firing process, and pensions.

Kinds of Employment in Greece

Firstly, it’s important to understand the kinds of employment in Greece. The most frequent kind of employment is full-time employment of vague duration. Secondly, part-time work has seen an increase in the last few years. Lastly, fixed-term employment is for a defined duration. It is also for a particular event or type of task.

End of Employment

Termination of a fixed-term contract

An employer can only expire fixed-term employment before termination for “compelling reasons”. For example, professional incompetence, absence, or insufficient performance of tasks. Still, the end of employment demands earlier notice. However, in that instance, the employer is not obligated to proceed with the payment of compensation. But, the legitimacy of “compelling reasons” has to be investigated by the courts. In case of denial, all compensation should still be paid.

Termination of an employment contract of vague duration

Termination of the employment relationship is only deemed acceptable based on valid arguments. This is according to Article 24 of the European Social Charter.

Regular notice of termination

A warning of termination and written announcement of the person being dismissed are given. The written notice must be signed by the director or a person lawfully authorized by him/her. It should be given between 1 and 4 months before the end of the contract. In case of a regular notice, all work relationships end after the period.

Irregular notice of termination

The lay-off period begins the day of delivery of the notification of termination of the employment. Otherwise, on the date referred to in the notice.

Regardless, the employer should submit a digital notice of the termination of the contract for both instances. This is put in the ERGANI information system. Additionally, the employer has to compensate the dismissed employee if there are no compelling reasons for dismissal. The compensation is the equivalent of the duration of the contract and the salary of the last month.

Collective redundancies

Collective redundancies are dismissals conducted by businesses. Reasons are not related to the individuals, but instead to financial or technical reasons. Legislation for collective dismissals gives the following restricts:

1. 6 employees for companies with 20 to 150 employees.

2. A percentage of 5% of manpower and up to 30 employees for an enterprise with more than 150 people.

Importantly, dismissals should not be due to reasons related to the individuals.

Termination of an employment contract by the employee

Employees can submit a notice of termination contract either in written form or orally. To be more specific, they have to notify their employers 3 months before the end at the latest. Employment is ended by the employee and they are not authorized to take unemployment allowance from the OAED. Then, there is a lack of prior notification of termination. This is essential for the remuneration of unemployment perquisites. Therefore, employers are not obligated to pay compensation.

Types of pension

Full old-age pension

This is paid when the employee has completed 4500 working days and is at the age of 67. A reduced pension can be given when the employee is 62 and has 4500 working days of insurance. Insured employees are authorized to contributory and national pension.

Pension because of the death of an insured person

The surviving husband and his/her children are authorized to take this pension. Also, there is the invalidity pension. Then, the Disability Certification Centre (Kepa) has to evaluate the insured employee. They should have 50% or more percentage of the disability to take the pension. The employee ought to also have been insured with IKA-ETAM for the minimum essential time, depending on age.

Special dismissal protection

Greek legislation offers special legal protection against redundancy. This is provided to the following categories of employees:

· Disabled employees;

· Employees, who have been called to military service;

· Pregnant women; and

· Employees on vacation period.


1. “International Employment Law Guide – Greece: Legal.” Deloitte, 20 May 2021, Retrieved September 9, 2021,

2. “EURES - End of Employment - European Commission.” EURES - End of Employment - European Commission, Retrieved September 9, 2021

3. “EURES - Kinds of Employment - European Commission.” EURES - Kinds of Employment - European Commission, Retrieved September 9, 2021

4. “Termination of Employment Contract” Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, 15 Apr. 2021, Retrieved September 9, 2021

5. “Employment Law Reform in GREECE: Valid Reason and STATUTORY Severance Are Both Prerequisites for Termination of Employment: Perspectives: Reed SMITH LLP.” Employment Law Reform in Greece: Valid Reason and Statutory Severance Are Both Prerequisites for Termination of Employment | Perspectives, Retrieved September 9, 2021, from

Christos Rafail Christopoulos  author of article Termination of employment in Greece

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