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Discover everything you need to know about Reunion

Hire in Reunion at a glance

Here ares some key facts regarding hiring in Reunion

GDP growth
GDP world share
Payroll frequency
Working hours
39 hours/week

Overview in Reunion

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Reunion Island, a French overseas department in the Indian Ocean, features a diverse landscape with active volcanoes like Piton de la Fournaise and lush rainforests. Initially uninhabited, it was claimed by France in 1642, and its economy historically centered on sugar cane agriculture reliant on slave labor. Today, with a population of nearly 900,000 of varied ethnic backgrounds, its economy is driven by the services sector, tourism, and agriculture, with sugar cane still significant. Despite being part of the European Union, which aids its relatively high standard of living, Reunion faces challenges like poverty and unemployment.

The island's workforce is young and diverse, with a significant portion under 40. Employment sectors include tourism, public administration, and agriculture, with emerging areas in renewable energy and technology. Cultural norms influence employment practices, emphasizing personal relationships and a hierarchical structure in business. Communication styles blend indirectness with formality, and both French and Creole languages are important. Work-life balance and respect for family are valued, though global influences are bringing changes.

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Employer of Record in Reunion

Rivermate is a global Employer of Record company that helps you hire employees in Reunion without the need to set up a legal entity. We act as the Employer of Record for your employees in Reunion, taking care of all the legal and compliance aspects of employment, so you can focus on growing your business.

How does it work?

When you hire employees in Reunion through Rivermate, we become the legal employer of your staff. This means that we take on all the responsibilities of an employer, while you retain the day-to-day management of your employees.

You as the company maintain the direct relationshiop with the employee, you allocate them the work and manage their performance.
Rivermate takes care of the local payrolling of the employee, the contracts, HR, benefits and compliance.

Responsibilities of an Employer of Record

As an Employer of Record in Reunion, Rivermate is responsible for:

  • Creating and managing the employment contracts
  • Running the monthly payroll
  • Providing local and global benefits
  • Ensuring 100% local compliance
  • Providing local HR support

Responsibilities of the company that hires the employee

As the company that hires the employee through the Employer of Record, you are responsible for:

  • Day-to-day management of the employee
  • Work assignments
  • Performance management
  • Training and development

Taxes in Reunion

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In Reunion, employers are responsible for a significant portion of social security contributions, averaging about 45% of an employee's gross salary, which fund benefits like healthcare, pensions, and unemployment insurance. Employers also withhold income tax based on a progressive system and may be subject to other taxes such as the apprenticeship tax and professional training tax, depending on their payroll size.

Additionally, employers must manage VAT, with a standard rate of 8.5% and reduced rates for specific services. VAT obligations include filing returns and remitting VAT periodically. There are also tax incentives available, such as the Investment Tax Credit and Tax Exemption for Innovation, aimed at stimulating specific sectors like manufacturing and R&D.

Employers need to stay informed about their tax responsibilities through resources like the French Tax Administration Website and ensure compliance to avoid penalties.

Leave in Reunion

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In Reunion, a French overseas territory, employees are entitled to 2.5 working days of paid vacation per month, totaling 30 days or five weeks annually, as per the French Labour Code (Articles L3141-3 to L3141-23). Additional vacation days may be granted based on collective agreements or company policies, particularly for longer-serving employees.

Vacation scheduling is negotiated between employer and employee to accommodate both parties' needs, with a mandatory 12 consecutive days off required between May 1st and October 31st. Reunion's vacation entitlements are notably generous compared to many countries, such as the United States.

Reunion observes both French national holidays and specific local holidays, including New Year's Day, Easter Monday, Labor Day, Victory in Europe Day, Ascension Day, Whit Monday, Bastille Day, Assumption of Mary, All Saints' Day, Armistice Day, Christmas Day, and locally, Abolition of Slavery Day on December 20th.

Other types of leave include sick leave, maternity and paternity leave, parental leave, bereavement leave, and leaves for family events, sabbaticals, and starting a business, with specific conditions and durations outlined in the French Labor Code. Collective bargaining agreements may provide more favorable conditions than the statutory minimums.

Benefits in Reunion

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Reunion, a French overseas department, benefits from the French social security system, which mandates contributions from both employers and employees to provide a range of employee benefits.

Healthcare: Managed by the French National Health Insurance (CnamSS), it covers medical expenses, hospitalization, and more. Employers often offer supplemental health insurance and wellness programs.

Retirement: Contributions are made to the national French retirement system, with options for supplementary retirement plans like PERCO and Madelin for additional savings.

Unemployment Insurance: Provides benefits to eligible employees who lose their job involuntarily.

Family Benefits: Includes family allowances and paid maternity and paternity leave. Employers may offer additional benefits like daycare assistance.

Work-Life Balance: Flexible work arrangements and additional paid time off are common perks to help employees manage their work-life balance.

Other Perks: Professional development opportunities and various discounts or free services are provided to enhance employee satisfaction and loyalty.

Public and Complementary Health Insurance: The "Caisse Générale de la Sécurité Sociale (CGSS)" manages the public health insurance, covering a significant portion of medical expenses, with many opting for complementary health insurance ("mutuelle") for additional coverage.

Overall, Reunion's integration into the French social security system ensures comprehensive coverage and benefits for employees, supplemented by optional employer-provided benefits.

Workers Rights in Reunion

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In Reunion, dismissals must be justified by a "real and serious cause," which can be personal (like incompetence or misconduct) or economic (such as company restructuring). Notice periods for dismissal vary by the employee's tenure, ranging from one week to two months. Severance pay is generally provided except in cases of serious misconduct, resignation, or retirement.

Reunion adheres to French anti-discrimination laws, protecting against discrimination based on numerous characteristics including sex, age, disability, and more. Victims can seek redress through internal reporting, the Defender of Rights, or labor courts. Employers are required to implement anti-discrimination policies, investigate complaints, and promote inclusivity.

Work conditions are regulated under the French Labor Code, with a standard 35-hour workweek and mandated rest periods. Employers must also meet ergonomic requirements to prevent workplace injuries and ensure employee well-being. This includes conducting risk assessments, providing safety training, and reporting accidents.

Employees have rights to a safe workplace, training on safety procedures, and can refuse unsafe work. Enforcement agencies like Occupational Health Services and the Department of Labor Inspection ensure compliance with health and safety regulations.

Agreements in Reunion

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Types of Employment Contracts in Reunion

Reunion, an overseas department of France, adheres to French labor law with some local adaptations. Here are the common types of employment contracts used:

  • Permanent Employment Contract (CDI): This is an indefinite contract providing significant job security and benefits.
  • Fixed-Term Contract (CDD): Used for temporary needs like seasonal work or project-based employment, with a specific end date.
  • Temporary Employment Contract (CTT): Involves a temporary work agency that places the employee in short-term assignments.
  • Apprenticeship Contract (Apprentissage): Combines on-the-job training with classroom learning, aimed at acquiring skills in a specific trade.
  • Professionalization Contract: Focuses on professional qualifications through a combination of work experience and theoretical education, targeting unemployed individuals or those changing careers.

Key Elements of Employment Agreements

Employment agreements in Reunion must include:

  • Identity and contact details of the parties involved.
  • Detailed job description and duties.
  • Defined working hours and compensation details including salary breakdown and benefits.
  • Clauses for termination and dispute resolution.

Probationary Periods

  • Governed by the French Labor Code, the duration varies by contract type, allowing both parties to assess suitability.
  • Termination during this period requires shorter notice and no justification, though it should not be discriminatory.

Confidentiality and Non-Compete Clauses

  • Confidentiality Clauses: Protect business secrets during and after employment, with clearly defined terms.
  • Non-Compete Clauses: Restrict post-employment competition, enforceable under strict conditions such as limited duration and geographical scope.

These contracts and clauses are designed to balance protection for both employers and employees, ensuring compliance with legal standards.

Remote Work in Reunion

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Remote work in Reunion, an overseas department of France, is governed by French labor laws, specifically the Accord National Interprofessionnel (ANI) of 2019. This framework mandates mutual consent for remote work arrangements, reversible work location agreements, employer-provided equipment, defined working hours, and employer responsibility for worker health and safety.

Technologically, successful remote work requires secure access, effective communication tools, project management software, and robust cybersecurity measures to protect data and prevent cyberattacks.

Employers have several responsibilities, including creating a comprehensive remote work policy, providing necessary training and support, managing performance, and maintaining workplace culture. Additionally, they must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), ensuring data protection and privacy for remote employees.

Flexible work arrangements like part-time work, flexitime, and job sharing are also available, each with specific legal frameworks under French law, enhancing work-life balance and catering to diverse employee needs.

Working Hours in Reunion

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  • Working Hours in Reunion: There is no statutory minimum or maximum number of working hours in Reunion. The typical workweek ranges from 35 to 40 hours, based on collective agreements within specific industries. Daily working hours, usually between 7 and 8 hours, are also determined by these agreements.

  • Regulatory Framework: The French Labour Code, applicable to Reunion as an overseas department, sets general guidelines for working hours, stating that daily working hours should not exceed 10 hours unless special authorization is obtained. This code also provides the basis for overtime regulations.

  • Overtime Work: Overtime is defined as work done beyond the standard hours set in the employment contract. It requires employee consent and is compensated either by increased pay (1.25 to 1.5 times the regular rate) or compensatory rest. There are limits on daily and weekly overtime hours.

  • Rest Periods and Breaks: Employees are entitled to a minimum daily rest of 11 consecutive hours and breaks during the workday, with a mandatory 20-minute break for workdays exceeding 6 hours. These breaks are not counted as working hours.

  • Night and Weekend Work: Night work, defined as work between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., requires medical examination before assignment and generally offers higher compensation or reduced hours. Weekend work needs employee consent and is compensated similarly.

  • Record Keeping: Employers must maintain a record of all overtime hours, which should be accessible for employee inspection.

These labor regulations in Reunion align with French labor laws, with specific adaptations and additional details provided by local collective agreements and industry-specific regulations.

Salary in Reunion

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Understanding competitive salaries in Reunion is essential for attracting and retaining skilled employees and ensuring fair compensation. Factors influencing these salaries include job responsibilities, experience, company size, industry, location, and language skills. Researching competitive salaries can be done through salary surveys, government resources, and job boards.

Reunion does not have a statutory minimum wage like mainland France; instead, minimum wages are determined through collective bargaining agreements specific to various sectors. These agreements set the minimum guaranteed salaries and are crucial for employers and employees to understand to ensure compliance and fairness.

Additionally, employees in Reunion may receive various bonuses and allowances such as the 13th-month pay, performance bonuses, profit-sharing, meal vouchers, transportation and housing allowances, and company retirement plans. These benefits can vary by company and industry based on collective bargaining agreements.

Payroll in Reunion typically follows a monthly cycle, with salaries paid via electronic transfer. Payroll details, including overtime compensation and payment during public holidays, are regulated under French labor laws with local adaptations. Understanding these payment structures and legal requirements is vital for both employers and employees in Reunion.

Termination in Reunion

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In Reunion, employment termination and severance pay are governed by the French Labour Code, individual employment contracts, and collective bargaining agreements. Notice periods vary based on the employee's tenure and the reason for dismissal. For instance, employees with less than one year of service have no legal minimum notice period, while those with more than a year have one to two months, depending on their role, unless dismissed for serious misconduct, which requires no notice.

Severance pay is entitled to employees terminated by the employer, provided they have at least eight months of service. The amount is calculated based on the length of service and the employee's gross salary, with specific conditions leading to forfeiture of this entitlement, such as serious misconduct or refusal of a comparable redeployment offer.

Termination procedures differ for personal and economic reasons, involving preliminary interviews, notice periods, and dismissal notifications. Legal disputes can arise, particularly if employees feel the termination was unjustified or procedures were not followed, in which case they can challenge the dismissal in Labor Court. Enhanced severance entitlements may be provided under collective agreements or individual contracts.

Freelancing in Reunion

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In Reunion, a French overseas department, the classification of workers as either employees or independent contractors is governed by French labor law, which significantly affects their rights, benefits, and tax obligations. The main criteria for differentiation include the level of control and integration into the business, with employees being more controlled and integrated compared to the more autonomous independent contractors.

Key Differences:

  • Control: Employees work under the employer's direction regarding their schedule, tasks, and methods, whereas independent contractors have more control over these aspects.
  • Integration: Employees are integrated into the company's operations, unlike independent contractors who work on specific projects without deep integration.
  • Compensation and Benefits: Employees receive regular salaries and benefits, while independent contractors negotiate their own fees and handle their own taxes and social security.

Contractual Agreements:

  • It's advisable for independent contractors to have written agreements detailing the scope of work, payment terms, timelines, and termination clauses to avoid misclassification and ensure compliance with labor laws.

Negotiation and Industry Practices:

  • Independent contractors should consider market rates, project scope, and their expertise during negotiations. Common industries for contractors in Reunion include IT, construction, marketing, and professional services.

Intellectual Property (IP):

  • IP rights are crucial for freelancers, with ownership usually retained by the freelancer unless the work is a "work made for hire." Freelancers should use written agreements to specify IP ownership and consider legal advice for complex situations.

Tax and Insurance:

  • Freelancers must register as self-employed, declare income, pay taxes, and make social contributions. While insurance is not mandatory, liability and professional indemnity insurance are recommended based on the risks associated with specific work types.

Overall, understanding these distinctions and legal requirements is essential for compliance and protection in the professional landscape of Reunion.

Health & Safety in Reunion

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Overview of Health and Safety Laws in Reunion

Reunion's health and safety regulations are governed by the French Labour Code, with oversight by the Ministry of Labour and the Regional Health Agency. Companies with 50 or more employees must establish Health, Safety, and Working Conditions Committees (CHSCT) to manage workplace risks.

Employer Obligations

Employers are required to:

  • Conduct risk assessments and create a prevention plan.
  • Provide health and safety training and necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at no cost.
  • Ensure medical surveillance and maintain first aid facilities.
  • Comply with regulations on hazardous chemicals and specific workplace risks like musculoskeletal disorders and workplace stress.

Worker Rights and Responsibilities

Workers have the right to:

  • Stop work if facing serious and imminent danger.
  • Participate in safety measures and risk assessments.
  • Follow safety procedures and report hazards.

Health Surveillance and Monitoring

Employers must engage occupational health services for regular medical examinations and specific risk assessments.

Inspection and Compliance

Inspections are carried out by the Labor Inspectorate and other bodies, focusing on compliance with health and safety regulations. Inspections can be routine, targeted, or follow-up, with potential actions ranging from improvement notices to criminal prosecution for severe violations.

Accident Reporting and Investigation

Employers must report workplace accidents and investigate causes to prevent recurrence. Workers are entitled to compensation for injuries and occupational diseases, with specific procedures for claims and potential employer contestation.


Reunion adheres to stringent health and safety standards, with comprehensive employer responsibilities and robust worker protections, reflecting its alignment with French and EU regulations.

Dispute Resolution in Reunion

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Reunion, an overseas department of France, follows the French legal system, including its labor dispute resolution mechanisms. The primary methods for resolving labor disputes are labor courts (Conseil de Prud'hommes) and arbitration panels.

Labor Courts (Conseil de Prud'hommes):

  • Jurisdiction over disputes between employees and employers.
  • Handle issues like employment contracts, working conditions, discrimination, termination, and compensation.
  • Composed of equal numbers of employee and employer representatives.
  • Divided into specialized sections and located in major cities.
  • Process begins with conciliation, followed by a panel hearing if unresolved. Decisions can be appealed.


  • Used for both individual and collective labor disputes.
  • Often stipulated in collective bargaining agreements.
  • Arbitrators can be chosen by the parties or appointed and issue binding decisions.

Compliance and Inspections:

  • Businesses must comply with French law, EU directives, and local ordinances.
  • Compliance audits and inspections are conducted by various government agencies and independent auditors.
  • Regular audits identify areas for improvement and ensure adherence to laws, avoiding legal repercussions.

Whistleblower Protections:

  • Protected under the Sapin II Law, which safeguards against retaliation and ensures anonymity.
  • Whistleblowers can report internally or to external authorities and may receive legal support.

International and EU Labor Standards:

  • Reunion adheres to ILO conventions and EU labor directives, influencing local labor laws.
  • Standards cover forced labor, discrimination, collective bargaining, working hours, and equal treatment among others.

These systems and regulations ensure that employees in Reunion have strong legal protections and that businesses operate within a framework of compliance, promoting ethical practices and protecting workers' rights.

Cultural Considerations in Reunion

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Reunion Island, a French department in the Indian Ocean, exhibits a unique workplace culture influenced by its diverse French, African, Malagasy, and Indian heritage. Communication in Reunionese workplaces is characterized by nuanced directness, where disagreements are often expressed indirectly to maintain group harmony. Formality levels vary; more formal in client meetings and less so in daily interactions, yet respectful address of superiors is consistent.

Non-verbal communication is crucial, with significant emphasis on body language and proxemics, indicating comfort with closer personal spaces. Relationship building is fundamental in negotiations, prioritizing rapport and trust before business dealings, and aiming for collaborative, win-win outcomes.

The hierarchical business structure in Reunion reflects a high Power Distance Index, with decisions typically flowing from the top down, though there is a focus on consensus and informal consultations within teams. This structure coexists with a collectivistic culture that values interpersonal relationships and consensus.

Public holidays in Reunion follow the French national calendar with additional regional observances reflecting its multicultural makeup. These holidays significantly impact business operations, necessitating careful planning to accommodate reduced productivity and operational hours during these periods.

Frequently Asked Questions for Employer of Record services in Reunion

Who handles the filing and payment of employees' taxes and social insurance contributions when using an Employer of Record in Reunion?

When using an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rivermate in Reunion, the EOR handles the filing and payment of employees' taxes and social insurance contributions. This includes managing the complexities of local tax laws and ensuring compliance with Reunion's social security system. The EOR takes on the responsibility of withholding the appropriate amounts from employees' salaries for income tax and social insurance contributions, and then remitting these payments to the relevant government authorities on behalf of the employer. This service ensures that all legal and regulatory requirements are met, reducing the administrative burden on the employer and minimizing the risk of non-compliance.

Is it possible to hire independent contractors in Reunion?

Yes, it is possible to hire independent contractors in Reunion. However, there are several important considerations to keep in mind to ensure compliance with local laws and regulations.

  1. Legal Framework: Independent contractors in Reunion are governed by French labor laws, as Reunion is an overseas department of France. This means that the legal framework for hiring and managing independent contractors is similar to that in mainland France.

  2. Contractual Agreement: It is essential to have a well-drafted contract that clearly defines the nature of the relationship, the scope of work, payment terms, and other relevant conditions. This contract should explicitly state that the individual is an independent contractor and not an employee to avoid any misclassification issues.

  3. Taxation: Independent contractors are responsible for their own taxes, including income tax and social security contributions. Employers must ensure that contractors are aware of their tax obligations and that they comply with local tax laws.

  4. Misclassification Risks: One of the significant risks of hiring independent contractors is the potential for misclassification. If the relationship between the company and the contractor resembles that of an employer-employee relationship, the contractor may be reclassified as an employee. This can lead to legal and financial consequences, including back payment of taxes, social security contributions, and potential fines.

  5. Benefits of Using an Employer of Record (EOR): To mitigate the risks associated with hiring independent contractors, companies can use an Employer of Record (EOR) service like Rivermate. An EOR can handle all aspects of employment, including compliance with local labor laws, payroll, tax filings, and benefits administration. This ensures that the company remains compliant with local regulations and reduces the risk of misclassification.

In summary, while it is possible to hire independent contractors in Reunion, companies must be diligent in ensuring compliance with local laws and regulations. Using an Employer of Record service can provide peace of mind and help manage the complexities associated with hiring and managing independent contractors.

What options are available for hiring a worker in Reunion?

In Reunion, employers have several options for hiring workers, each with its own set of legal and administrative requirements. Here are the primary methods:

  1. Direct Employment:

    • Permanent Contracts (CDI): These are indefinite-term contracts that provide job security and benefits to employees. Employers must comply with local labor laws, including minimum wage, working hours, and social security contributions.
    • Fixed-term Contracts (CDD): These contracts are for a specified period and are typically used for temporary projects or seasonal work. They must comply with specific regulations regarding duration and renewal.
  2. Temporary Employment Agencies:

    • Employers can hire workers through temporary employment agencies for short-term needs. The agency handles the administrative and legal responsibilities, while the employer focuses on the operational aspects.
  3. Freelancers and Independent Contractors:

    • Hiring freelancers or independent contractors can be a flexible option for specific projects or tasks. However, it is crucial to ensure that the relationship does not resemble an employment relationship to avoid legal complications.
  4. Employer of Record (EOR) Services:

    • Using an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rivermate can be highly beneficial for companies looking to hire in Reunion without establishing a legal entity. An EOR handles all employment-related responsibilities, including payroll, tax compliance, benefits administration, and adherence to local labor laws. This allows companies to focus on their core business activities while ensuring full compliance with local regulations.

Benefits of Using an Employer of Record (EOR) in Reunion:

  1. Compliance with Local Laws:

    • An EOR ensures that all employment practices comply with Reunion's labor laws, including contracts, wages, working hours, and termination procedures. This minimizes the risk of legal issues and penalties.
  2. Cost and Time Efficiency:

    • Setting up a legal entity in Reunion can be time-consuming and costly. An EOR allows companies to hire employees quickly and efficiently without the need for a local entity, reducing administrative burdens and costs.
  3. Payroll and Tax Management:

    • The EOR manages payroll processing, tax withholdings, and social security contributions, ensuring accurate and timely payments. This helps avoid errors and ensures compliance with local tax regulations.
  4. Employee Benefits Administration:

    • An EOR provides and administers employee benefits, such as health insurance, retirement plans, and other statutory benefits, ensuring that employees receive the necessary entitlements.
  5. Risk Mitigation:

    • By handling all employment-related responsibilities, an EOR mitigates the risks associated with non-compliance, employee disputes, and other legal issues.
  6. Focus on Core Business:

    • Companies can concentrate on their core business operations and strategic goals while the EOR manages the complexities of employment in Reunion.

In summary, while there are various options for hiring workers in Reunion, using an Employer of Record like Rivermate offers significant advantages in terms of compliance, efficiency, and risk management. This makes it an attractive option for companies looking to expand their workforce in Reunion without the complexities of establishing a local entity.

What legal responsibilities does a company have when using an Employer of Record service like Rivermate in Reunion?

When a company uses an Employer of Record (EOR) service like Rivermate in Reunion, it delegates many of its legal responsibilities related to employment to the EOR. However, there are still some legal responsibilities and considerations that the company must be aware of:

  1. Compliance with Local Labor Laws: The EOR will ensure that all employment practices comply with Reunion's labor laws, including contracts, wages, benefits, and termination procedures. The company must ensure that the EOR is fully knowledgeable and compliant with these laws.

  2. Employee Rights and Protections: The EOR is responsible for ensuring that employees' rights are protected under Reunion's labor laws. This includes adherence to working hours, overtime regulations, leave entitlements, and workplace safety standards.

  3. Taxation and Social Contributions: The EOR handles the calculation, withholding, and remittance of all required taxes and social contributions on behalf of the employees. This includes income tax, social security contributions, and any other mandatory deductions.

  4. Employment Contracts: The EOR will draft and manage employment contracts in accordance with Reunion's legal requirements. These contracts must outline the terms of employment, including job duties, compensation, benefits, and termination conditions.

  5. Payroll Management: The EOR is responsible for managing payroll, ensuring that employees are paid accurately and on time, and that all payroll records are maintained in compliance with local regulations.

  6. Work Permits and Visas: If the company is hiring foreign nationals, the EOR will assist in obtaining the necessary work permits and visas, ensuring compliance with immigration laws in Reunion.

  7. Employee Benefits: The EOR will manage employee benefits, including health insurance, retirement plans, and other statutory benefits required by Reunion law.

  8. Termination and Severance: The EOR will handle the termination process in compliance with local laws, including the calculation and payment of any severance or other termination-related benefits.

  9. Data Protection: The company must ensure that the EOR complies with data protection regulations, safeguarding employee personal data in accordance with Reunion's data protection laws.

  10. Ongoing Communication: The company should maintain regular communication with the EOR to ensure that all employment practices are being managed effectively and in compliance with local laws. This includes monitoring the EOR's performance and addressing any issues that may arise.

By using an EOR like Rivermate in Reunion, a company can significantly reduce its administrative burden and mitigate the risks associated with non-compliance with local employment laws. However, it is essential for the company to choose a reputable EOR with a strong understanding of Reunion's legal landscape to ensure a smooth and compliant employment process.

Do employees receive all their rights and benefits when employed through an Employer of Record in Reunion?

Yes, employees in Reunion receive all their rights and benefits when employed through an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rivermate. An EOR ensures compliance with local labor laws and regulations, which is crucial in Reunion, a French overseas department where French labor laws apply. Here are the key benefits and rights that employees can expect:

  1. Employment Contracts: Employees will receive legally compliant employment contracts that adhere to French labor laws, including terms related to job duties, salary, working hours, and termination conditions.

  2. Minimum Wage: Employees are guaranteed at least the French minimum wage (SMIC), which is regularly updated to reflect inflation and cost of living adjustments.

  3. Social Security and Benefits: The EOR ensures that all mandatory social security contributions are made. This includes health insurance, retirement pensions, unemployment insurance, and family benefits, providing comprehensive social protection.

  4. Paid Leave: Employees are entitled to paid leave, including annual leave, public holidays, maternity/paternity leave, and sick leave, in accordance with French labor laws.

  5. Working Hours and Overtime: The EOR ensures compliance with regulations on working hours, which typically include a 35-hour workweek. Overtime is compensated according to legal requirements.

  6. Health and Safety: The EOR is responsible for ensuring that workplace health and safety standards are met, providing a safe working environment for employees.

  7. Termination and Severance: In case of termination, the EOR ensures that all legal procedures are followed, including notice periods and severance pay, protecting employees' rights.

  8. Non-Discrimination: Employees are protected against discrimination based on gender, age, race, religion, disability, or any other protected characteristic, in line with French anti-discrimination laws.

By using an EOR like Rivermate, companies can ensure that their employees in Reunion receive all the rights and benefits they are entitled to under French law, while also simplifying the complexities of international employment compliance.

What is the timeline for setting up a company in Reunion?

Setting up a company in RĂ©union involves several steps and can take a considerable amount of time due to the administrative processes involved. Here is a detailed timeline for setting up a company in RĂ©union:

  1. Business Plan and Feasibility Study (1-2 weeks):

    • Before starting the registration process, it is essential to prepare a comprehensive business plan and conduct a feasibility study to understand the market conditions and regulatory environment in RĂ©union.
  2. Choosing the Legal Structure (1 week):

    • Decide on the legal structure of your business (e.g., SARL, SAS, SA). This decision will impact the registration process and the documentation required.
  3. Name Reservation (1-2 days):

    • Check the availability of your desired company name with the Institut National de la PropriĂ©tĂ© Industrielle (INPI) and reserve it.
  4. Drafting Articles of Association (1 week):

    • Prepare the articles of association, which outline the company's structure, purpose, and operating procedures.
  5. Opening a Bank Account (1-2 weeks):

    • Open a corporate bank account in RĂ©union and deposit the initial share capital. The bank will provide a certificate of deposit, which is required for registration.
  6. Notarization of Documents (1 week):

    • Have the articles of association and other necessary documents notarized by a public notary.
  7. Registration with the Centre de Formalités des Entreprises (CFE) (1-2 weeks):

    • Submit the required documents to the CFE, which acts as a one-stop shop for business registration. The CFE will forward the documents to various authorities, including the Commercial Court, INSEE (for statistical purposes), and the tax authorities.
  8. Publication of Notice (1 week):

    • Publish a notice of the company's formation in a legal journal (Journal d’Annonces LĂ©gales).
  9. Obtaining the SIRET Number (1-2 weeks):

    • Once the registration is complete, the company will receive a SIRET number (a unique identification number) from INSEE.
  10. Registration for Social Security and Tax (1-2 weeks):

    • Register the company with the social security authorities and the tax office. This includes obtaining a VAT number if applicable.
  11. Additional Licenses and Permits (Variable):

    • Depending on the nature of your business, you may need to obtain additional licenses or permits, which can take additional time.

Overall, the process of setting up a company in RĂ©union can take approximately 6-10 weeks, assuming there are no significant delays or complications. Using an Employer of Record (EOR) service like Rivermate can significantly streamline this process by handling many of the administrative tasks and ensuring compliance with local regulations, allowing you to focus on your core business activities.

How does Rivermate, as an Employer of Record in Reunion, ensure HR compliance?

Rivermate, as an Employer of Record (EOR) in Reunion, ensures HR compliance through several key strategies tailored to the unique legal and regulatory environment of the region. Here are the primary ways Rivermate achieves this:

  1. Local Expertise and Knowledge: Rivermate employs local HR professionals who are well-versed in Reunion's labor laws, regulations, and cultural nuances. This local expertise ensures that all employment practices are compliant with the latest legal requirements.

  2. Employment Contracts: Rivermate prepares and manages employment contracts that adhere to Reunion's legal standards. These contracts include all necessary clauses related to wages, working hours, benefits, termination conditions, and other statutory requirements, ensuring full compliance with local labor laws.

  3. Payroll Management: Rivermate handles payroll processing in strict accordance with Reunion's tax laws and social security regulations. This includes accurate calculation and timely payment of salaries, taxes, social contributions, and other statutory deductions, ensuring that both the employer and employees meet their legal obligations.

  4. Tax Compliance: Rivermate ensures that all tax filings and payments are completed accurately and on time. This includes corporate taxes, employee income taxes, and other relevant fiscal responsibilities, thereby avoiding any legal penalties or fines.

  5. Benefits Administration: Rivermate manages employee benefits in line with local regulations, including health insurance, retirement plans, and other statutory benefits. This ensures that employees receive all legally mandated benefits, and the employer remains compliant with local laws.

  6. Labor Law Adherence: Rivermate stays updated on changes in labor laws and regulations in Reunion. This proactive approach allows them to adjust HR policies and practices promptly, ensuring ongoing compliance with any new legal requirements.

  7. Employee Relations and Dispute Resolution: Rivermate provides support in managing employee relations and resolving disputes in accordance with local labor laws. This includes handling grievances, disciplinary actions, and terminations in a legally compliant manner, reducing the risk of legal disputes.

  8. Health and Safety Regulations: Rivermate ensures that workplace health and safety standards are met, in compliance with Reunion's regulations. This includes implementing necessary safety protocols and conducting regular audits to maintain a safe working environment.

  9. Data Protection and Privacy: Rivermate ensures compliance with data protection laws, safeguarding employee information in accordance with local and international standards. This includes secure handling, storage, and processing of personal data.

By leveraging these strategies, Rivermate provides a comprehensive solution for businesses looking to operate in Reunion, ensuring full HR compliance and allowing companies to focus on their core operations without the complexities of local employment laws.

What is HR compliance in Reunion, and why is it important?

HR compliance in Reunion involves adhering to the local labor laws, regulations, and standards that govern employment practices in the region. Reunion, as an overseas department of France, follows French labor laws, which are known for being comprehensive and protective of employee rights. Here are the key aspects of HR compliance in Reunion and why it is important:

Key Aspects of HR Compliance in Reunion:

  1. Employment Contracts:

    • Written Contracts: Employment contracts must be in writing and should clearly outline the terms of employment, including job responsibilities, salary, working hours, and conditions for termination.
    • Types of Contracts: There are various types of employment contracts, such as permanent contracts (CDI), fixed-term contracts (CDD), and temporary contracts. Each type has specific regulations and compliance requirements.
  2. Working Hours and Overtime:

    • Standard Working Hours: The standard working week in Reunion is 35 hours. Any work beyond this is considered overtime and must be compensated accordingly.
    • Overtime Compensation: Overtime pay rates are regulated, and employers must ensure they comply with these rates to avoid legal issues.
  3. Minimum Wage:

    • SMIC: The minimum wage in Reunion is aligned with the French minimum wage (SMIC). Employers must ensure that all employees are paid at least the minimum wage.
  4. Employee Benefits:

    • Social Security: Employers must contribute to the French social security system, which covers health insurance, retirement pensions, unemployment insurance, and other benefits.
    • Paid Leave: Employees are entitled to paid leave, including annual leave, maternity/paternity leave, and sick leave. Compliance with these leave entitlements is mandatory.
  5. Health and Safety:

    • Workplace Safety: Employers are required to maintain a safe working environment and comply with health and safety regulations to prevent workplace accidents and illnesses.
  6. Termination and Severance:

    • Notice Periods: Specific notice periods must be adhered to when terminating an employee, depending on the length of service and the type of contract.
    • Severance Pay: Employees may be entitled to severance pay based on their tenure and the circumstances of their termination.

Importance of HR Compliance in Reunion:

  1. Legal Protection:

    • Avoiding Penalties: Non-compliance with labor laws can result in significant penalties, fines, and legal disputes. Ensuring compliance protects the company from these risks.
    • Litigation Prevention: Proper adherence to employment laws reduces the likelihood of employee lawsuits related to wrongful termination, discrimination, or unpaid wages.
  2. Employee Satisfaction and Retention:

    • Fair Treatment: Compliance with labor laws ensures that employees are treated fairly, which can lead to higher job satisfaction and retention rates.
    • Trust and Morale: A compliant workplace fosters trust and boosts employee morale, contributing to a positive work environment.
  3. Reputation Management:

    • Corporate Image: Companies known for adhering to labor laws and treating employees well are likely to have a better reputation, which can attract top talent and enhance business relationships.
    • Corporate Social Responsibility: Demonstrating a commitment to legal and ethical standards in employment practices enhances the company's corporate social responsibility profile.
  4. Operational Efficiency:

    • Standardized Processes: Compliance requires the implementation of standardized HR processes and policies, which can improve overall operational efficiency.
    • Risk Management: Proactive compliance measures help in identifying and mitigating potential risks related to employment practices.


HR compliance in Reunion is crucial for any business operating in the region. It ensures legal protection, enhances employee satisfaction, maintains the company's reputation, and promotes operational efficiency. Given the complexity of French labor laws, businesses may benefit from partnering with an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rivermate, which can help navigate these regulations and ensure full compliance.

What are the costs associated with employing someone in Reunion?

Employing someone in Reunion involves several costs that employers need to consider. These costs can be broadly categorized into direct compensation, statutory benefits, and administrative expenses. Here’s a detailed breakdown:

  1. Direct Compensation:

    • Gross Salary: This is the primary cost and includes the agreed-upon salary before any deductions.
    • Bonuses and Incentives: Depending on the employment contract, employers may need to pay performance bonuses, annual bonuses, or other incentive-based payments.
  2. Statutory Benefits and Contributions:

    • Social Security Contributions: Employers in Reunion are required to contribute to the social security system, which covers health insurance, family benefits, and pensions. The employer's contribution rate can be significant, often around 40-50% of the gross salary.
    • Unemployment Insurance: Contributions to unemployment insurance are mandatory and are shared between the employer and the employee.
    • Occupational Accident Insurance: Employers must also contribute to insurance that covers workplace accidents and occupational diseases.
    • Supplementary Pension Schemes: Contributions to supplementary pension schemes (such as ARRCO and AGIRC for managerial staff) are also required.
    • Health and Safety Contributions: Employers may need to contribute to various health and safety funds, which support workplace safety initiatives and employee health programs.
  3. Paid Leave and Absences:

    • Annual Leave: Employees in Reunion are entitled to paid annual leave, typically five weeks per year.
    • Public Holidays: There are several public holidays in Reunion, and employees are generally entitled to paid leave on these days.
    • Sick Leave: Employers may need to cover the cost of sick leave, depending on the duration and the specific terms of the employment contract.
    • Maternity and Paternity Leave: Paid leave for maternity and paternity is mandated by law, and employers may need to cover part of these costs.
  4. Administrative and Compliance Costs:

    • Payroll Management: Managing payroll can be complex and may require specialized software or services, which come with their own costs.
    • Legal and Compliance Costs: Ensuring compliance with local labor laws, tax regulations, and employment standards can incur legal and administrative expenses.
    • Recruitment Costs: The process of recruiting and onboarding new employees involves costs such as advertising, recruitment agency fees, and training expenses.
  5. Other Benefits:

    • Health Insurance: While part of the social security system, employers may also offer additional private health insurance as a benefit.
    • Meal Vouchers and Transportation Allowances: These are common benefits that employers might provide to enhance employee satisfaction and comply with local practices.

Using an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rivermate can help manage these costs effectively. An EOR handles payroll, benefits administration, compliance, and other HR functions, ensuring that all statutory requirements are met and reducing the administrative burden on the employer. This can lead to cost savings and allow the employer to focus on core business activities while ensuring that employees in Reunion are managed in accordance with local laws and regulations.

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