Checklist for hiring an employee – Employment in Hungary

June 22, 2016

Last updated on 15 February 2022.

If you run a Hungarian company, sooner or later you will need employees to help you run your business. Finding the right employee is an art in itself, for which you might want to consult an HR specialist. Apart from that, there are some basic things you need to know. Read about this in detail, and scroll down for the checklist.

Documents needed for hiring an employee

If you want to employ someone for your Hungarian company, they will need to have a social security number and tax number. If you employ a Hungarian citizen, they will most probably have these by default, and they will surely not need a separate work permit.

If your employee comes from another country of the European Union, they will need a registration card, which basically functions as a resident permit and work permit. They will still need a separate social security number and tax number.

If your employee comes from a third country, that is, from outside the European Union, they will need a resident permit and a work permit. These two permits are combined in one single document, for which they can apply (together with the social security number and tax number) when you already have an agreement with them.

This means your future employer cannot present a work visa when applying for a position at your company; they can acquire it only when you already have an agreement.

Before your new hire can start working

You should have an employment contract in which the position and job requirements, the term of the employment (indefinite or fixed), the gross salary and the first day of employment of the new hire is clearly stated. The first day of employment cannot be the same as the date on the contract, as every company is obliged to declare to the tax authority when a new employee starts working there – and do this at least one day before they start.

Please note that in Hungary the minimum salary for a basic, 40-hour week in a position without a need for any qualification is gross HUF 200,000 (ca. EUR 555) / month, while the guaranteed minimum salary for positions requiring secondary education is gross HUF 260,000 (ca. EUR 720) / month.

The more complex the job you want to assign to your employee, the higher qualifications they will need to be able to perform the job properly. Accordingly, their salary will need to be higher as well.

Payroll and Accountancy

By the time you get to hiring an employee, you already know that in Hungary every company is obliged to have an accountant. Your accountant will prepare the payrolls for you and your employees in every month. For this, you will need to send your accountant the attendance sheet of each employee by the 1st day of the next month. Salaries for the previous month should be paid to employees by the 10th and contributions should be paid by the 12th.

For example, if you want to hire an employee working for your company starting from July:

  • On 30 June the latest you sign the labor contract and let your accountant declare employment to the tax authority.
  • Your employee starts working on 1 July and works through 31 July (and will probably continue to do so in the coming months).
  • On 1 August, you need to send the attendance sheet of your employee to your accountant.
  • By 10 August, you need to pay salary to your employee.
  • By 12 August, you need to pay taxes and contributions to the authorities.

In short, the checklist for hiring an employee

  • Find the right candidate
  • Agree on the salary
  • Prepare a contract – make sure to include the gross salary and the first day of work
  • Make sure they have all the necessary documents (social security number, tax number, work permit, resident permit) – or make sure they can acquire, or even help them acquire these by the time you want them to start working for you
  • Pay salary by the 10th of each month
  • Pay contributions by the 12th of each month

At any point, make sure to consult your accountant in order to ensure you always comply with current regulations.

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