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Question: What is the Posted Workers Directive?

The Posted Workers Directive is a set of mandatory rules regarding the terms and conditions of employment to be applied to posted workers. A posted worker is an employee who is temporarily sent by his employer to perform work in another EU Member State. This work can be part of a contract for services, an intra-group posting or a hiring out through a temporary agency.

These rules make sure that posted workers are entitled to a set of fundamental rights that are in effect in the Member State where they are posted. These rights consist of:

  • Minimum rates of pay
  • Maximum work periods and minimum rest periods
  • Minimum paid annual leave
  • The conditions of hiring out workers through temporary work agencies
  • Equal treatment between men and women (gender equality)
  • Health, safety and hygienic conditions at work

The Posted Workers Directive is applied to (1) guarantee that all rules and rights for posted workers are protected throughout the EU and (2) to maintain an environment of fair competition and prevent “social dumping”, in which foreign service providers can undercut local service providers because their labor standards are lower.

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