The wage at which workers are contracted to employers, and which employers actually pay them, is the gross wage. In addition to the amount paid into workers’ accounts (the net wage), the gross wage includes the amount that employers pay to the state on behalf of workers in taxes and contributions.

The wage is paid in money following the completion of work.

The wage payment date is agreed upon in the employment contract and, according to the law, it must be no later than the 15th day of the month for the work carried out in the previous month.

Employers are the ones who bear business risk, and poor business performance does not affect their obligation to pay workers’ wages for work carried out. A failure to pay wages is a criminal offence.

No later than 15 days following the payment of the wage, employers must give workers their payslips showing how the wage was calculated. The calculation must contain the number of hours worked; the number of hours for which the wage is paid (including in respect of sick leave, annual leave, etc.); and bonuses, if any, including overtime.

If employers do not calculate and pay wages in the stipulated way (for example, if one part is not paid into a bank account but given in cash), they are cheating the state but they are also directly damaging workers who will, as a result, have a lower pension.

The payment of wages or part thereof in cash is illegal.

The calculation must also contain the amount of taxes and contributions.

Contributions are taxes that serve a predetermined purpose, such as funding the pension and healthcare systems.

Employers must calculate and pay contributions simultaneously with the payment of wages.

The contribution for pension insurance is 20 per cent of the gross wage while the contribution for health insurance is 16.5 per cent.

If employers have a claim against a worker, they may deduct it from the wage only with that worker’s signed consent.

The amount of the legal minimum wage is determined by the government every year. No worker, regardless of the job or the employer, may be paid less than the minimum wage for full-time work.

Collective negotiations on wages and the setting of these through collective agreements are the fundamental and most important activity of a trade union.

Collective bargaining can be carried out at the level of a company or institution, or at the level of an entire activity (branch, sector).

In Croatia, there are two branch collective agreements, binding on all employers and applying to all workers in those sectors: the Collective Bargaining Agreement for the Construction Industry; and the Collective Bargaining Agreement for the Hospitality Industry.


Only when organised in a union can workers collectively bargain with the employer about their wages and working conditions and organise strike action if they cannot agree with the employer on these issues.

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