In this page, we’ll break down all you need to know about leave laws in Turkey.
Read on to learn about employees’ rights in regards to paid time off/annual leave, sick leave, parental leave, national/public holidays, and more.
This page is intended for reference purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Please see official government sources or consult a legal professional for actual legal advice.
After one year of service time, employees in Turkey are entitled to 14 days of paid annual leave.
After completing five years of service time, this increases to 20 days per year. Workers who are 18 or younger and workers who are 50 or older also receive a minimum of 20 days paid annual leave.
After completing 15 years of service time, the annual leave entitlement increases to 26 days per year.
Vacation pay must be paid out to the employee in a lump-sum, prior to the annual leave period.
It’s the responsibility of the employer to ensure that employees take their annual leave. Employers have the right to put an employee on annual leave even without their permission. Generally, annual leave should be taken all at once, however if the employer and employee agree, it can be split into parts, with a minimum of 10 days for each part.
Any unused vacation time remaining upon separation of employment must be paid out to the employee.
Employees in Turkey are entitled to take time off work if they are unwell (and as long as they have a statement from a doctor to support their absence). Employers do not have to pay for sick leave, but employees can claim compensation from the state after being off work for more than three days.
Extended periods of sick leave give the employer the right to terminate an employee’s contract. The maximum period of sick leave starts at eight weeks for employees with less than six weeks of service time, and rises depending on seniority.
Turkey has the following public holidays:
|New Year’s Day
|National Sovereignty and Children’s Day
|Labour and Solidarity Day
|Commemoration of Atatürk, Youth and Sports Day
|Democracy and National Unity Day
|After the end of the Islamic month Ramadan (3 days)
|Starting on the 10th day of the Islamic month Dhu’l-Hijjah (4 days, plus half-day on the previous day)
Public holidays that fall on a weekend or non-working day are not moved to another day.
Employees have the right to a day off with pay on public holidays. If required to work on a public holiday, they are entitled to an additional day’s wage for each day worked.
Employees in Turkey are entitled to 16 weeks of maternity leave, compensated at full pay by social security. This includes eight weeks prior to birth and eight weeks after birth. For multiple births, an additional two weeks are added to the prenatal period, making 18 weeks of maternity leave total.
With a doctor’s approval, the employee can continue working up until three weeks prior to the expected due date, and the length of maternity leave not taken prior to birth can be added on to the post-birth period of leave.
The mother can choose to take an additional six months of unpaid maternity leave following the initial 16/18 weeks of paid maternity leave.
Alternatively, following the expiry of maternity leave, the mother can work half-time for 60 days for their first childbirth, 120 days for their second, and 180 days for their third, and have the difference compensated by social security.
Fathers are entitled to five days of paternity leave, which is paid by their employer.
An adoptive parent is entitled to eight weeks maternity leave starting from the date of adoption, along with the right to six months unpaid leave following this period, and the same right to take half-time leave (the same period as with natural births), up until the child turns three years old.
Employees in Turkey are entitled to three days paid bereavement leave in the case of the death of their mother, father, spouse, brother or sister, or child.
What is Bereavement Leave? Click here to learn more.
Employees are entitled to three days paid leave, paid by their employer, when getting married.