Compensation for overtime work


In the basic working time system, an employee may perform his work for 8 hours a day and an average of 40 hours in an average 5-day working week, in the adopted settlement period. Work in excess of the accepted working time standards and in excess of the extended daily working time constitute overtime work. An employee who has worked overtime is entitled to compensation for overtime work in the form of remuneration with additional or additional time off. It is up to the employer to reward an employee for the extra time spent on the job. It is he who decides the type of compensation.

Compensating for overtime work - ways

The employer can choose from several ways of remunerating the employee for overtime (Article 1511 and Article 1512 of the Labor Code):

  • an allowance of 100% of remuneration,

  • an allowance of 50% of remuneration,

  • free time at the employee's request,

  • free time without the employee's request,

  • lump sum for overtime work.

An overtime allowance of 100% of the salary

An employee will be entitled to an allowance in the amount of 100% of remuneration if the overtime work performed by him will fall to:

  • in the night,

  • on Sundays and public holidays, which are non-working days for the employee, in accordance with the working time schedule applicable to him

  • on a non-working day granted to an employee in exchange for work on a Sunday or a holiday, in accordance with the working time schedule applicable to him,

  • and also in a situation where the work exceeds the 40-hour week standard of working time.

Example 1.

Bożena works from Monday to Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. On Monday, the employer ordered Bożena to stay at work an hour longer. The employer has night hours from 23:00, therefore, for an hour between 23:00 and 24:00, Bożena is entitled to an allowance for night hours in the amount of 100% of remuneration.

Example 2.

Due to the crowds of work, Mr. Wojciech received an order to perform work on May 3, which was to be a day off for Mr. Wojciech due to the holiday. For the work on this day, Mr. Wojciech is entitled to an allowance in the amount of 100% of the remuneration.

An overtime bonus of 50% of the salary

An allowance in the amount of 50% of remuneration may be paid to the employee when he has performed overtime work on days that are working days for him (in accordance with the working time schedule applicable to him, taking into account working Sundays and public holidays). The exception is overtime at night - in this case, the person is entitled to 100% of the remuneration.

If the overtime work is performed on a non-working day and the employee has an equivalent working time system, compensation for overtime work is provided in the form of a 50% wage supplement.

Example 3.

Mr. Wojciech works in the warehouse in regular hours from 8:00 to 16:00. Due to the illness of a colleague, the boss asked Mr. Wojciech to stay 3 hours longer on Wednesday. For 3 overtime hours, the employee is entitled to an allowance in the amount of 50% of the remuneration.


For overtime work that exceeds the daily and weekly norm at the same time, the employer has the right to pay the employee only one bonus to the remuneration.

Time off for overtime

The employee's free time granted at his request is granted to him in the same amount as the number of hours worked. As a rule, the employee should use this time in a given settlement period. However, at the employee's request, the free time may also be used outside the settlement period in which the employee worked overtime, however, after 3 years, failure to grant time off becomes statute-barred.

If the compensation for overtime work takes place by granting the employee time off without the employee's request, its duration should be 50% higher than the number of hours worked. This time must be used by the employee by the end of the reference period at the latest.

Example 4.

Ms Ewa works in the basic working time system. On Thursday, at the employer's request, she stayed 2 hours longer at work. Ewa decided to take these 2 hours on Friday and finish work 2 hours earlier. Therefore, she applied to the employer for free time.

Lump sum for overtime work

Compensation for overtime work may also be granted in the form of a lump sum. It applies to employees who work permanently outside the workplace. The amount of the lump sum is based on the anticipated working time in overtime.


Please note that the number of overtime hours is limited. An employee is entitled to at least 11 hours of uninterrupted daily rest. Thus, an employee may work a maximum of 13 hours a day.