Contracted internship: what does the law say?

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Posted on August 20, 2015 at 12:58 PMUpdated Sep 30, 2015, 10:42 a.m.

Signing an agreement: an obligation

To carry out an internship, since July 11, 2014, it is mandatory to have an agreement signed between the intern or his legal representative if he is a minor and the host organization whether it is a company , a local authority, a public administration, an association or other. The intern's referent teacher as well as a tutor from the host structure also initials this document which mentions in particular the start and end dates of the internship, the intern's activities, the hourly rate of gratuity, the social protection scheme. … Note that the employer has the obligation to keep his list of internship agreements up to date in the single personnel register.

A limited internship duration

The law aims, in particular, to ensure that companies and administrations do not use trainees in an abusive manner to obtain cheap labor. Suddenly, internships of more than six months are prohibited and a company cannot have more than 10% of interns in its workforce.
A training certificate – also compulsory – is issued at the end of the period indicating the total effective duration and the total amount of bonuses paid.

Reinforced gratification

In terms of internship, we are not talking about salary, but gratification. Since September 1, 2015, the mandatory minimum bonus has increased to € 554.40 per month compared to € 508.20 previously. This bonus had already been made compulsory for any internship of more than two months by the law of November 24, 2009. By two months, we mean 44 days of 7 hours of work (or 309 hours), consecutive or not, over a school year or university. For internships that do not exceed this duration, the bonus is always optional.

Transport and catering: the same rights

If “an internship must not be used by the company to replace an employee” (decree of 29 August 2006), the intern is entitled, regardless of the duration of his presence, to the same advantages as employees with regard to the reimbursement of part of its transport costs, access to restaurant tickets as well as to the activities of the works council if it exists.

What about paid holidays?

From two months of internship, the right to leave is triggered. They are not necessarily paid by the company, but must allow the trainee to be able to rest. In addition, the leaves and authorizations of absence – which must be mentioned in the agreement – are identical to those of employees in the event of pregnancy, paternity or adoption. In this case, the gratuity is not compulsory since it is based on the actual hours of presence. If the employer decides to pay it to you anyway, this part is no longer exempt from social security contributions.

Conclusion

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