Rivermate | Algeria flag


Working Hours and Overtime Regulations

Understand the laws governing work hours and overtime in Algeria

Standard working hours

In Algeria, the Algerian Labor Code (Law 90-11 of April 21, 1990) is the primary legal source governing working hours and employment conditions. The standard workweek in Algeria consists of 40 hours, typically spread across five working days per week.

However, it's important to note that certain sectors or jobs may have different working hour regulations outlined in relevant sectoral agreements or specific legislation. Additionally, some industries may have collective bargaining agreements that modify working hours beyond legal minimums.

Employers are obligated to maintain accurate records of employee working hours. To ensure full compliance with working hour regulations in your specific industry and for up-to-date information, consulting with an Algerian labor lawyer or HR expert is highly recommended.


In Algeria, labor laws regulate overtime work to ensure workers are protected from excessive hours and receive fair compensation. Overtime work is generally permitted only in exceptional situations. These can include preventing accidents, addressing urgent repairs, or meeting increased production demands in specific cases. Employers can require overtime work with appropriate justification and often in consultation with labor unions or employee representatives where applicable.

The law stipulates that overtime hours must not exceed 20% of the regular working hours per week, which is generally a maximum of 8 additional hours per week. Furthermore, employees cannot be required to work more than a total of 12 hours per day, including overtime hours.

Algerian law mandates premium pay for overtime work to compensate employees for the additional hours. The minimum rate is at least 50% above the regular hourly wage for overtime. There are situations that may warrant even higher overtime pay rates, such as overtime on weekly rest days or during official holidays. Some industries might offer more advantageous overtime pay provisions through collective bargaining agreements.

Rest periods and breaks

In accordance with Algerian labor law, workers are provided with rest periods and breaks to ensure adequate recovery and well-being during their working hours.

Daily Breaks

Employees are entitled to one or more breaks totaling at least one hour during their workday. This time is intended for meals and rest. Breaks must be scheduled so that workers do not exceed five consecutive hours of work.

Weekly Rest

All workers are entitled to a full weekly rest period of at least 24 consecutive hours. This usually falls on Friday in Algeria. Limited exceptions exist for essential services or industries where continuous operations are necessary. In these cases, compensatory rest must be provided.

Authoritative Sources

The Algerian Labor Code (Law 90-11 of April 21, 1990) is the primary legal source outlining rest periods and break entitlements.

Important Considerations

Some industries or companies may have additional provisions for breaks or rest periods in their collective bargaining agreements. Specific rest period regulations may apply to workers engaged in shift work.

Night shift and weekend regulations

Algerian law acknowledges that night shift and weekend work require specific regulations to safeguard workers. Here are the key provisions:

Night Shift Work

  • Definition: Algerian law typically defines night work as any work performed between 9 PM and 5 AM.
  • Restrictions: Night work is generally limited or subject to special conditions, especially for women and young workers.
  • Compensation: Employees involved in regular night shift work may be eligible for additional compensation or premium pay.

Weekend Work

  • Weekly Rest: All workers have a right to a weekly rest period, which usually falls on Friday in Algeria.
  • Exceptions: For essential services and continuous operations, weekend work might be necessary. In these situations, employers must provide either compensatory rest or premium pay for weekend work.

Specific Considerations

  • Collective Bargaining Agreements: Some industries might have stricter regulations or more generous compensation for night shift and weekend work through their collective bargaining agreements.
  • Health and Safety: Employers have a duty to consider the potential health and safety impacts of night shift work and take steps to mitigate risks.
Rivermate | A 3d rendering of earth

Hire your employees globally with confidence

We're here to help you on your global hiring journey.