Salaries and payroll taxes in 2024, Hungary

ژانویه 17, 2024

In Hungary, minimum wages are adjusted every year to offset the impact of inflation. This year, the minimum wage was increased by 15%, while the guaranteed minimum salary by 10%. No changes were made to payroll taxes in 2024, but there have been some changes to the SZÉP Card.

Early increase: already from December 2023

Normally, minimum wages are adjusted from 1 January each year. However, this time the increased minimum wage was introduced already from 1 December 2023. This was decided in order to compensate for the effects of the high inflation throughout 2023.

Do you have employees on minimum wage? Read on!

Minimum wage is the lo lowest payment an employer can offer an employee. While it is defined as a monthly gross payment (from which taxes are to be deducted), it proportionately applies to daily and hourly wages too. To ensure that the minimum wage remains a living wage, it is adjusted regularly (at least once every year). In Hungary, there are in fact two types of minimum wage, depending on the qualifications needed for the job.

  • Minimum wage must be paid to employees whose job does not require a high school diploma or any higher qualification. This has been increased by ca. 15% from HUF 232,000 gross to HUF 266,800 gross as of 1 December 2023.
  • Guaranteed minimum salary must be paid to employees whose job needs at least a secondary education or a high school diploma. This has been increased by ca. 10% from HUF 292,400 gross to HUF 326,000 gross as of 1 December 2023.

Do you have employees that receive either the minimum wage or the guaranteed minimum salary? Make sure to raise their salaries in time to comply with the required minimum. You will also need to adjust their labor contracts, since the gross salary must be listed there.

Do you have employees with salaries above the minimum? You might also want to give them a raise to keep up with inflation.

The adjustment will also increase your payroll costs, partly because of the raise itself, and partly because of the increased tax burden. However, the rate of payroll taxes in 2024 remains the same, so the tax increase will be proportionate to the raise you give.

Do you take a salary as a managing director? Are you paying minimum contributions? Read on!

As of 1 December 2023, the Hungarian minimum wage increased to HUF 266,800, and the guaranteed minimum salary to HUF 326,000. The managing director’s salary or the base of the minimum contributions also follow this increase. Read more here.

Salary calculation in 2024

In Hungary, the gross salary is the salary negotiated between employer and employee, and indicated in the labor contract. The minimum wage also always refers to the gross amount.

This is done because taxes are paid based on the gross salary. Since tax exemptions may also apply e.g. based on a change to marital status, the net salary, so the take home pay of an employee might change while the gross salary remains the same. In any cases, taxes are calculated by the employer who then forwards them to the tax authority. As a result, employees only receive their net salaries.

Beside taxes paid by the employee, the employer must also pay taxes after each employee. These are calculated and paid monthly, together with the employee’s taxes. The gross salary and the employer’s taxes combined represent the cost of having each employee in a given month at your company.

The below table shows the payroll taxes in 2024 in Hungary associated with the minimum wage, the guaranteed minimum salary, and an additional amount. If you want to check salary costs for other salaries, visit our salary calculator here. The indicated amounts are all in HUF.

 Minimum wageGuaranteed minimum salaryOther salary
Gross salary266,800326,000450,000
Cost borne by employee   
Income tax (15%)40,02048,90067,500
Social security contribution (18.5%)49,35860,31083,250
Net salary (to be paid out)177,422216,790299,250
Cost borne by employer   
13% Employer’s tax34,68442,38058,500
Total payroll cost301 484368,380508,500

No changes to payroll taxes in 2024

Payroll related tax rates remain the same as they were in 2023. This includes the personal income tax, social security contribution, and the social contribution tax. As a result, payroll costs at your Hungarian company will only change in proportion to the raise you give your employees.

Changes to the SZÉP card

In Hungary, various forms of “non-salary compensation” are available to employers, normally at more favorable tax rates than regular wages, with the added benefit of providing a boost to specific sectors. They are called fringe benefits, or “cafeteria” in Hungarian. The SZÉP Card is one of the most popular options, and it manages a compensation that can be spent on hot meals, travel accommodation within Hungary, and various leisure activities such as museum entrance fees or theater tickets.

In 2023, the “pockets” of the SZÉP Card were abolished, meaning that users do not have to allocate funds specifically for each one of the three purposes. This change was final, and remains in force in 2024 too.

Also in 2023, a government decree allowed employers to give their employees a one-off allowance of up to HUF 200,000 as fringe benefits between 1 August and 31 December 2023. Since this was a one-time measure, SZÉP Card limits are back to HUF 450,000 in 2024.

The same decree also allowed users to spend their SZÉP Card funds on groceries as well as hot meals and other purposes. This measure, however, was in force only until 31 December 2023. Starting from 1 January 2024, buying groceries with the SZÉP Card is not allowed anymore.

The Helpers Team at your service

Have you taken care of giving a raise to your employees? Both the minimum wage and the guaranteed minimum salary was increased as of 1 December 2023 (by 15% and 10%, respectively). Discuss your options with your accountant or HR specialist, and make sure what you pay your employees remains competitive as well as a living wage.

The Helpers Team provides comprehensive business assistance to company owners in Hungary, with a focus on small and medium-sized companies. We work as a one-stop-shop, offering everything from company formation through accounting and HR support.

Need any help? Fill in the form below to get in touch.

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