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Cabo Verde

Working Hours and Overtime Regulations

Understand the laws governing work hours and overtime in Cabo Verde

Standard working hours

In Cabo Verde, the national labor legislation sets the standard workweek at a maximum of 44 hours. This equates to a maximum of 8 hours per day. However, employers have the option to extend daily working hours by one additional hour, as long as they compensate employees with an extra half-day of rest per week.

There are also specific provisions for younger workers. For employees aged between 16 to 18, the legal framework provides additional protection by reducing their standard workweek to 38 hours, with a daily maximum of 7 hours.


In Cabo Verde, labor law outlines clear rules and compensation structures for overtime work, safeguarding employee well-being and ensuring fair remuneration.

Overtime Limits

  • Daily Overtime: Daily overtime is capped at a maximum of 2 hours.
  • Annual Overtime: The annual overtime limit is set at 160 hours. However, with the employee's written consent, this limit can be extended to a maximum of 300 hours per year.

Overtime Compensation

Cabo Verdean law mandates a minimum overtime premium to compensate employees for exceeding regular working hours. This premium is calculated on top of the employee's regular wage:

  • Overtime Premium: Overtime work must be compensated at an hourly rate that is at least 50% higher than the regular wage.

Here's a formula to calculate the overtime pay:

Overtime Pay = (Regular Hourly Rate x 1.5) x Number of Overtime Hours

For example, if an employee's regular hourly rate is 100 CVE (Cabo Verdean Escudo) and they work 2 hours of overtime, their overtime pay would be:

Overtime Pay = (100 CVE x 1.5) x 2 hours = 300 CVE

Rest periods and breaks

Cabo Verdean labor law guarantees workers rest periods and breaks throughout the workday to ensure their well-being and maintain productivity. Here are the specific entitlements:

  • Short Breaks: Cabo Verdean legislation doesn't explicitly mandate short breaks throughout the workday. However, employers are encouraged to implement reasonable break periods considering the nature of the work.

  • Mandatory Break: Workers are entitled to a mandatory rest period of at least 30 minutes after working for 6 consecutive hours. This break can be split into two 15-minute intervals if mutually agreed upon between the employer and employee.

  • Weekend Rest: All employees are entitled to a minimum of one uninterrupted rest day per week, typically on Sundays.

It's important to note that the National Labor Legislation is the primary legal reference for these regulations.

Night shift and weekend regulations

In Cabo Verde, labor law acknowledges the demanding nature of night and weekend work, and specific regulations are in place for these work schedules.

For night shift work, it is generally defined as work performed during the night hours, typically between 10 pm and 6 am. Employees working night shifts are entitled to a premium on top of their regular wages. While this premium is not explicitly mandated by national legislation, it is a common practice. The specific premium amount can be negotiated within employment contracts or determined by collective bargaining agreements. Night workers may also be entitled to additional breaks throughout their shift compared to day workers. The specifics of these breaks should be outlined in employment contracts or collective bargaining agreements.

Regarding weekend work regulations, all employees are legally entitled to a minimum of one uninterrupted rest day per week, typically on Sundays. Work performed on weekends attracts a 100% premium on top of the regular pay. This premium incentivizes employees for working outside their standard workweek.

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