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    The Finnish labor legislation – an introduction

    I am going to write a series of short articles as an introduction to the Finnish legal system and legislation governing different areas of employment. I will try to do this by introducing some of the principles of the Finnish labor law system and by also introducing the most essential legislation that governs employment in Finland. I will also discuss matters such as the differences between the collective agreement and an employment contract.

    In this first part I will discuss this main employment legislation very generally, but in the following articles I will get into them in a bit more detail when I write about different aspects of employment related issues. Later I will also go through the relevant legislation for those who are working on a grant or scholar.

    Employment Contracts Act is the most important law governing all employees’ employment excluding civil servants and self-employed workers. The Employment Contracts Act regulates work done under employment and consists of for example the obligations and responsibilities of both the employer and the employee during an employment contract.

    Working Hours Act regulates not only the weekly or daily allowed maximum working hours, but also great many other things such as maximum overtime hours, compensation for overtime and the obligation to document the employees’ working hours.

    Annual Holidays Act regulates for example the accumulation of the annual holidays and how the annual holiday pay is calculated. However, if you are working at the university under the 1600 hour rule, then the Annual Holiday Act is not enforced.

    Occupational Safety and Health Act is a very significant law that has regulations about not only the physical but also the psychological safety in the workplace.

    Health Insurance Act is the law in which for example maternity and paternity pays and long term sick-leaves are regulated.

    In the Unemployment Act there are regulations about unemployment compensation and who is entitled to get the benefits and under what circumstances.

    Non-discrimination Act and Act on the Protection of Privacy in Working Life are also worth mentioning here.

    Mia Weckman
    Lawyer, The Finnish Union of University Researchers and Teachers

    • Painetussa lehdessä sivu 35