The Basics for Drafting Terms of Employment and Contracts

When an employer or HR manager is hiring someone new, the thought of drafting the requisite employment contract or determining the terms of employment can be quite daunting, depending on the nature, duration and seniority of the role. So we’ve decided to clarify some of the basic requirements to alleviate some of the expected uncertainty and distress.

The relevant legislation, namely The Terms of Employment (Information) Acts 1994-2012 , requires an employer to provide an employee with a written ‘statement of terms of employment’ within the first 2 months of the commencement of employment.

In general, the Acts apply to any person:-

  • Working under a contract of employment or apprenticeship
  • Employed through an employment agency or
  • Employed in the service of the State (including members of the Garda Siochana and the Defence Forces, civil servants and employees of any local authority or health board etc.)

Therefore this ‘statement of terms’ must include the following information:

  • Full name of the employer and the employee
  • The address of the employer in the state
  • The place of work or a statement indicating that the employee will be required to work at various places
  • Job title and/or nature of the work
  • Date of commencement of employment
  • If the contract is temporary and the expected duration
  • If the contract is fixed term the date on which the contract expires
  • The rate of pay or method of calculating pay
  • Terms and conditions relating to hours of work (including overtime)
  • Terms and conditions relating to paid leave
  • Terms and conditions relating to sick pay
  • Terms and conditions relating to pensions and pension schemes (if any)
  • Period of notice which the employee is entitled to receive and required to be given on termination
  • A reference to any collective agreement which affects the terms of employment
  • Details of rest periods and breaks requirements regarding shift work
  • Grievance procedure
  • Disciplinary procedure including company rules and regulations
  • Deductions from pay
  • Provision for lay off/short time
  • Additional benefits

In this guidance piece- J.O.S Solicitors have outlined the basic terms which should be included and as prescribed by law.  However, this list is not exhaustive and when possible, legal advice should ideally be sought before any attempt is made to draft terms of employment and contracts as to ensure the necessary level of compliance and protection.

If you would like J.O.S Solicitors to assist your business with its HR needs or to simply discuss your options about any Employment Law or HR Compliance issue, then please contact us.


 This publication is for guidance purposes only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. No liability is accepted by J.O.S Solicitors for any action taken or not taken in reliance on the information set out in this publication. Any and all information is subject to change and professional or legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this publication.