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Hungary/ 5.1 General legislation  

5.1.6 Labour laws

Artists and other cultural actors can work in five forms: as civil employees, general employees, individual entrepreneurs (sole traders), corporate entrepreneurs, as well as freelance workers. The minimum monthly wage from January 2016 is HUF 111 000 (about EUR 360), and 129 000 for qualified positions. Gross average earning is about 2.1 times this amount.

Social partnership functions relatively effectively on the national level and on a large scale, e.g. between the government and civil employees - whereby they come to an agreement on improvements in working arrangements including productivity and salary increases. It is less so, or even non-existent, in respective cultural sub-sectors.

Labour conditions of civil servants and civil employees are regulated by the acts on civil service and on public finances. They contain the detailed schedules and criteria of salaries and wages – with many direct references to cultural and artistic jobs. These are updated each year, in which the trade unions of the respective cultural sectors take an active part. As was described in chapter 5.1.5, until recently a considerable number of cultural workers acted in the framework of a "betéti társaság" (Bt), the simplest form of business companies or partnerships, usually with family members as quasi business partners. A "Bt" is also used by employees receiving a regular wage who do occasional freelance work. In a number of public cultural institutions a two-tier salary system operates with some artists on full time contracts, while others are self-employed.

The provisions in the pensions system permit performers to retire early, e.g. dancers and some other performing artists under certain circumstances.

There are no specific provisions concerning the involvement of volunteers that are relevant to culture. Act LXXXVIII/2005 provides the necessary legal environment and protection for public voluntary work.

See also comparative information provided in the Compendium "Themes!" section under "Status of Artists".

Chapter published: 18-11-2016

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