Bulgaria: Definition of Irregular Working Hours

The article defines irregular working hours, how the rights and obligations of the employer and the employee are regulated by the law; how irregular working hours are accounted for and whether they are different from overtime.

First and foremost, irregular working hours are essentially working hours by which normal working hours can be extended under certain circumstances.

  • What irregular working hours mean:

Irregular working hours are established for certain industries or positions where workers sometimes need to continue performing their duties after regular working hours.

Why it is necessary Depending on the nature of the work, for certain occupations specific periods of time appear busier or might be associated with fixed deadlines. In this case, the employer has the right to issue a specific order and irregular working hours are established for certain industries or positions where workers sometimes need to follow up after the regular working hours.

When the period of exceptional workload is over, the normal working process shall resume.

  • How the irregular working day is accounted for

The additional hours shall not be calculated and paid as overtime. This is the difference between irregular hours and overtime.

  • How employees are compensated for working beyond regular working hours

When an employee is required to continue to perform duties beyond working hours on weekdays, this is compensated with additional paid annual leave.

The Labour Code specifies that this additional paid annual leave is not fewer than 5 working days, and the law does not require the additional hours worked to correspond to the additional hours of leave.

It’s worth mentioning that employees working irregular hours cannot work more than 12 hours per day.

  • What obligations and rights of the employer and employee are
  • When introducing a non-regular working day, the employer is obliged to consult the trade unions/workers’ representatives,issue an order and notify the employees, ensure that employees take breaks, and compensate employees with an additional paid annual leave.
  • Which professions irregular working hourssuggest

The law gives the employer the right to decide for which employees to introduce irregular working hours.Typical examples of jobs that may work irregular hours are accountants (at the end of the month or year), medical workers (when an emergency comes up), technical support and others. Irregular working hours cannot be introduced for employees working reduced hours, those under eighteen years old, and the ones in hazardous occupations.

And another important issue – is that irregular working hours cannot be established for homeworkers.

Eurofast team are keeping track of any changes affecting work options in 21 countries in South Europe and the Middle East and are always ready to furnish with the latest updates and provide efficient support.

To get detailed information on the criteria and stages of the irregular working time procedure, please send us your inquiry to Eurofast office in Sofia, at sofia@eurofast.eu

Eurofast Sofia Editing Team