Remote’s guide to employing in

Bulgaria
bulgaria flag}

Make employment in Bulgaria easy. Let us handle payroll, benefits, taxes, compliance, and even stock options for your team in Bulgaria, all in one easy-to-use platform.

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  • Capital city

    Sofia

  • Currency

    Bulgarian lev (лв., BGN)

  • Languages

    Bulgarian

  • Population size

    6,912,730

  • Remote-Owned Local Entity

Services available in this country:
Employer of RecordContractor Management

Facts & Stats

Bulgaria Map Illustration
  • Capital city

    Sofia

  • Currency

    Bulgarian lev (лв., BGN)

  • Languages

    Bulgarian

  • Population size

    6,912,730

  • Ease of doing business

    Easy

  • Cost of living index

    $$ (91 of 139 nations)

  • Payroll frequency

    Monthly

  • VAT - standard rate

    20%

  • GDP - real growth rate

    3.7% (2019)

Bulgaria is a country in Southeast Europe with Romania, Serbia and North Macedonia, Greece, and Turkey as its bordering countries. Its capital and largest city is Sofia while other major cities include Plovdiv, Varna, and Burgas.

Bulgaria is a founding state of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and is a member of NATO, the European Union, and the Council of Europe. The country's economy revolves around services industries, in addition to mining and agriculture. Even though Bulgaria has the lowest GDP per capita and joint-lowest Human Development Index in the European Union, it is a developing country with an upper-middle-income economy.

Grow your team in Bulgaria with Remote

Looking to employ workers in Bulgaria? Companies hiring in Bulgaria must either own a legal entity in the country or work with a global employment solutions provider, usually one that provides employer of record services.

Remote can employ your team in Bulgaria on your behalf through our local legal entity in the country and handle payroll, benefits, taxes, and compliance for your Bulgaria team. You can also pay contractors now in Bulgaria with Remote.

Risks of misclassification

Bulgaria, like many other countries, treats self-employed individuals or contractors and full-time employees differently. Misclassification of contractors in Bulgaria may lead to fines and penalties for the offending company.

Employing in Bulgaria

Companies that are looking to hire people in Bulgaria must ensure they have a deep understanding of the Bulgarian Labour Code. Legislation in Bulgaria is also closely linked to the labour laws of the European Union. Companies that are looking to employ people in Bulgaria must understand the specific Bulgarian laws around equal pay for men and women, the limitations of overtime, bans on workplace discrimination, and the specific legislative requirements of managing sick leave for Bulgarian employees.

Common questions that could come up during the hiring process may be about overtime rates, health insurance, and parental leave. Remote can help you offer a complete, competitive, and compliant benefits package to your employees in Bulgaria.

Minimum Wage

From January 2021, the minimum working salary and monthly social security income were increased from BGN 610 to BGN 650. The maximum monthly social security income remains at BGN 3,000.

Payroll Cycle

Salaries in Bulgaria are paid mid-month for the previous month. For example, salaries for April are paid in mid-May.

Onboarding Time

We can help you get a new employee started in Bulgaria fast. The minimum onboarding time we need is only 6 working days.

Our team ensures your employees are onboarded and paid as quickly as possible while keeping your business compliant with all local employment legislation. The minimum onboarding time begins after the employee submits all required information onto the Remote platform. The onboarding timeline is also dependent upon registration with local authorities.

For all non-nationals of the country of employment, the Right to Work assessment (if applicable) will add three extra days to the total time to onboard. There may be extra time required if we need to follow-up on the right to work assessment.

Please note, payroll cut-off dates can impact the actual first day of employment. Remote has a payroll cut-off date of the 10th of the month unless otherwise specified.

14 Public holidays

Jan
Monday, January 2, 20231New Year Holiday - observed (Нова година)
Mar
Friday, March 3, 20232Liberation Day (Ден на Освобождението на България от османско иго - национален празник)
Apr
Friday, April 14, 20233Orthodox Good Friday (Великден)
Saturday, April 15, 20234Orthodox Holy Saturday (Великден)
Sunday, April 16, 20235Orthodox Easter Sunday (Великден)
Monday, April 17, 20236Orthodox Easter Monday (Великден)
May
Monday, May 1, 20237Labour Day (Ден на труда и на международната работническа солидарност)
Monday, May 8, 20238Saint George’s Day - observed (Гергьовден, Ден на храбростта и Българската армия)
Wednesday, May 24, 20239Culture and Literacy Day (Ден на светите братя Кирил и Методий, на българската азбука, просвета и култура и на славянската книжовност)
Sep
Wednesday, September 6, 202310Unification Day (Ден на Съединението)
Friday, September 22, 202311Independence Day (Ден на Независимостта на България)
Dec
Monday, December 25, 202312Christmas Day (Рождество Христово)
Tuesday, December 26, 202313Second Day of Christmas (Рождество Христово)
Wednesday, December 27, 202314Christmas Eve - observed (Бъдни вечер)

Competitive benefits package in Bulgaria

At Remote, we’re obsessed with helping you craft the best possible employee experience for your team. We are leading the way in practicing “fair equity,” which means making sure employees everywhere have access to both the required and supplemental benefits they need to thrive (and that will allow you to attract the best local talent).

Our benefits packages in Bulgaria are tailored to fulfill the local needs of your employees. Typically, our packages contain some or all of the following benefits:

  • Health Insurance

  • Dental Insurance

  • Vision Insurance

  • Mental Health Support

  • Pension or 401(K)

  • Life and Disability Insurance

Taxes in Bulgaria

Learn how employment taxes and statutory fees affect your payroll and your employees’ paychecks in Bulgaria.

  • 10.92%

    State Social Insurance contributions (disability, disease, maternity, old age pension)

  • 2.80%

    Supplementary Compulsory Pension Insurance

  • 4.80%

    Healthcare contributions (mandatory medical insurance)

  • 0.4-1.1%

    Accident at Work and Occupational Diseases Fund

  • The contributions to the State Insurance System are based on the gross salary of the employee, but the total is limited to a monthly maximum of BGN 3,000 as of 2020.

Types of Leave

In Bulgaria, four weeks of leave is granted every year. It is also interesting to note that in the scenario where a public holiday falls on a weekend, the following Monday becomes a paid holiday.

Employment termination

Termination process

In Bulgaria, there are various laws to be followed by both employers and employees in the case of a termination. For example, if there is a mutual agreement between the parties to terminate the employment contract, it is easily dealt with, by communicating it in writing. However, if the employee is part of a union, then the employer will have to take permission from the union before terminating the employee.

Employers face significant complexity managing any form of termination, as there are so many specific types of terminations specifically outlined in the labour code and other employment laws.

Potential reasons for terminations:

  • closing the enterprise, in which the individual is employed, or of a part of the enterprise

  • reduction of the number of working positions

  • decrease of workload

  • discontinuation of work by the employing enterprise for more than 15 business days

  • lack of capacity of the employee for effective performance of his/her labour duties

  • lack of professional qualification or required educational background, necessary for effective performance of the labour duties

  • refusal of the employee to relocate to another town or location together with the enterprise, in which the employee works

  • change of the requirements for performance of the labour duties inherent to the position, provided that the employee fails to meet these requirements

  • the employee has become entitled to retire on old age pension; or upon attainment of the age of 65 in the case of professors, associate professors or persons holding a doctoral degree (with some exceptions)

  • if the employee has been granted a pension for contributory service and retirement age in a reduced amount in accordance with the Social Insurance Code

  • if the employment relationship has arisen after the employee has acquired and exercised his right to old age pension

  • if the employment relationship has arisen after the employee has been granted a contributory service and retirement age pension in a reduced amount in accordance with the Social Insurance Code

  • objective impossibility for performance by the employee

  • if the position has to be vacated for an employee who was reinstated in the position after having been unlawfully dismissed

  • execution of an agreement for assignment of management with registered directors of the employing entity (in the latter case an employer is entitled to terminate employment agreements only with managerial personnel; this right lapses upon the expiry of nine months from the commencement of the agreement for assignment of management).

Notice period

In Bulgaria, the length of the notice period depends on whether it’s an open ended (permanent) contract or a fixed term contract.

  • Notice period for an open ended contract: a minimum of one (1) month of notice period

  • Fixed term contract: A minimum of three (3) months of notice period

Severance pay

Severance pay for unilateral termination

There is no statutory severance pay unless in the following scenarios:

  • Termination of employment due to an illness: In this case, for an employee with at least 5 years of service, 2 months' gross remuneration must be paid as severance

  • Termination after the employee is eligible for a pension: In this case, 2 months of pay as severance (or) 6 months of pay for a job tenure of >= 10 years

  • Termination because of downsizing or closing down the company: One month of severance must be paid

Severance pay for termination by mutual agreement

When the employer wants to terminate through a mutual agreement (both parties agree to terminate the contract), there is a minimum requirement of four (4months) of severance (bonus) to be paid to the employee. However, the parties can agree on a higher amount of the compensation.

Probation periods

In Bulgaria, the probation period cannot exceed 6 months.