Trial period

Published on : 10/01/2023 10 January Jan 01 2023


- Expressly provide for the trial period in the employment contract: insert a clause indicating its conditions, duration and its possible renewal if applicable (see below),

- The duration of the trial period is set by the Labor Code. It is 4 months long where so called “cadres” (exempts) are concerned and shorter for employees whose professional classification is lower,

- Different trial period lengths may also be provided for by industry wide collective bargaining agreements or the employment contract itself,

- Renewal of the trial period is only possible if the applicable industry wide CBA and the contract so provide,

- Termination of the employment contract during the trial period does not have to be explained and a rationale need not be provided. However, it should be notified in writing and within the applicable timeframe (so as to not result in the employment contract being performed beyond the term of the trial period).


- Forget that the purpose of a trial period is to allow the employer to assess the employee’s skills and performance. Therefore, terminating it due to reorganization for business reasons may be challenged,

- Terminate the trial period without formality or expect an immediate departure; the labor code provides for a specific notice period to comply with which varies depending on the length of the trial period,

- Terminate the trial period for disciplinary reasons. In case of misconduct, the disciplinary procedure provided for in the company’s internal regulations must be complied with,

- Terminate the trial period for reasons such as pregnancy or any other illicit decision-making ground; the termination would then be deemed null and void and trigger either a forced reinstatement or damages.



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