Lesson 5: The Origin of the Employment Contract

AutorPilar Núñez-Cortés Contreras
Cargo del AutorProfesora Titular de Área. Universidad Loyola Andalucía

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1. Introduction

This lesson contains the formal obligations for companies with respect to the employment contract. We also resume possible consequences for employers if they do not comply with them. In addition we are studying the initial phase of the employment contract. In particular the legal treatment of the probationary period in the employment contract is analyzed.

2. The form of the employment contract
2.1. Freedom of form

The form of the employment contract can be in written or in spoken. Both contract forms are valid. Its validity derives from the agreement of the two parties: employer and employee.

2.2. Written form of employment contracts

Many regulations establish that some types of contracts, especially those with particular features must be in written. If the form of the contract does not satisfy certain requirements, the employer can suffer negative consequences. He could be punished through economic sanctions. Nevertheless the contract is valid and enforceable in order to protect workers' rights.


  1. Training contracts are temporary in nature

    They need to be in written form adjusted to a legal document which is defined by the Ministry of Employment. If the employer does not comply with this requisite, the employer needs to prove its temporary nature. Despite this the contract is in force.

  2. Replacement contracts are also temporary in nature

    These contracts also need to be in written adjusted to a legal document.

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2.3. Thebasiccopyofcontracts

In case of a mandatory contract in written form, the employer needs to deliver a basic copy to his/her employee during the ten days after the conclusion of the contract.


Training, replacement contracts

3. Probationary period
3.1. Concept

It is an initial phase within the employment contract, during which either the employer or the employee decides whether the employment contract will be extended after its duration.

3.2. Duration

The duration is preferable established by the collective agreement. If the collective agreement does not establish its duration, there is a maximum...

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