Celebrating Eurovision with odd European payroll policies

12th May 2016

Eurovision-Payroll-Contest-logo-2016With Eurovision upon us this weekend we thought we’d look at some of the more unusual tax, payroll and employment laws around Europe.



  • Germany – 12 points
    In a bid to stop burnout of homeworkers Germany’s employment ministry has banned its managers from calling or emailing staff out of hours except in emergencies.
  • Switzerland 11 points
    Salaries are usually reviewed once a year in November or December, with pay rises taking effect from 1st January of the following year. Most employers pay out a 13th monthly salary payment in December.
  • Estonia 10 points
    The Estonian government was the first in Europe to put a flat tax system into practice.
  • Sweden 9 points
    If you intend to reside in Sweden, you’ll need to register at the local Tax Office. This process is called folkbokföring. Sounds interesting!
  • Moldova 8 points
    Employees are limited to 120 hours of overtime per calendar year.
  • Azerbaijan 7 Points
    Foreign nationals receiving income in connection with their work in Azerbaijan must contribute 3% of their gross salary to the Social Insurance Fund.
  • Belarus 6 points
    New tax legislation, known locally as the “social parasite” law, has sparked dismay in Belarus, where many struggle to make ends meet, by effectively moving to criminalise unemployment.
  • Russia 5 Points
    In a bid to stem protests against Putin participants in protests where public order is violated could now face fines of 300,000 roubles ($9,100) – more than the average annual salary
  • San Marino 4 Points
    San Marino is one of a handful of countries that use the Euro but are not part of the Eurozone
  • Albania 3 points
    A foreign company may transfer one or more of its employees to work in Albania for a maximum duration of 12 months.
  • Iceland 2 points
    The labour market is largely regulated through collective bargaining. Collective agreements govern approximately 88% of the workforce.
  • United Kingdom 1 point
    The introduction of the National Living Wage, National Minimum Wage, Living Wage, London Living Wage et al sees the UK entry at the bottom of the pile for a confusing array of well meaning employee pay rates.