Basic Country Requirements in Brazil

Probation period, working hours, and public holidays.

Updated on March 15th, 2023

What are the public holidays in Brazil?

There are ten public holidays mandated by the federal government in Brazil. State and municipal legislation also provide local holidays that apply to workplaces within the state or municipality. Employees will be entitled to take these days off, in addition to federally mandated public holidays. 

  • New Year's Day (Jan 1)
  • Anniversary of São Paulo (Jan 25) - for employees hired in the city of São Paulo
  • Carnival Day 2 (Varies)
  • Good Friday (Varies)
  • Tiradentes Day (Apr 21)
  • Labor Day (May 1)
  • Corpus Christi (Varies) 
  • Constitutionalist Revolution (Jul 9) - for employees hired in the state of São Paulo
  • Brazil Independence Day (Sep 7)
  • Our Lady of Aparecida - patron saint of Brazil (Oct 12)
  • All Souls Day (Nov 2)
  • Proclamation of the Republic (Nov 15)
  • Christmas Day (Dec 25)

Carnival Days are optional holidays. While optional, on Days 1 and 2, almost all employers in Brazil often give employees time off, whereas on Day 3 employees typically work.

Employees should take the public holidays they are entitled to based on the location of Velocity Global's entity in Brazil (in São Paulo). However, there is no statutory requirement for an employee to do so. Therefore, an agreement should be made between the employer and employee regarding which state's public holidays will be honored (assuming the employee's physical working location is outside of São Paulo).

Legal holidays are already included in the monthly wage (30 days) paid to the employee. If the employee works on a public holiday, s/he is entitled to double rate of pay, except where the employee has been granted a compensatory day off within 1 week.

For the employer to function legally on a holiday, they must obtain the approval of the Ministry of Labor.

If a holiday falls on a Saturday/Sunday, the following Monday (or applicable working day) is not given as a day off. However, if a holiday falls on a Tuesday/Thursday, it is common practice for employers to extend the holiday to also include Monday/Friday respectively (please note that this is not mandatory).

It is also common to extend the Christmas Day holiday to incorporate December 24th as well (this is not mandatory and at the company's discretion). Additionally, it is common to extend the New Year's Day holiday to incorporate December 31st as well (this is not mandatory and at the company's discretion).

What is the probation period in Brazil?

The Labor Code stipulates that the probationary period term may not exceed 90 days and may be renewed once during the maximum 90 days. It is common practice to agree on a 45-day probationary contract and renew it for 45 more days. Otherwise, the contract will subsequently be regulated by the laws governing indefinite agreements.

Please note that probationary contracts, if not terminated, automatically renews after 90 days as indefinite agreements.

Velocity Global Brazil’s standard practice is to offer a probationary period of 45 days, with an option to extend for an equal period of time (where renewal would be automatic after 45 days).

What is the notice period in Brazil?

Please see the Terminations and Offboarding in Brazil page.

What are the working hours in Brazil?

As a general rule, the Federal Constitution and the Labor Code provide that 44 hours per week. In general, employees work 8 hours per day from Monday to Friday, and 4 hours on Saturday.

However, employees are allowed to work 8.48 hours per day from Monday to Friday, provided there is no work on Saturdays and there is a written agreement with the employee.

Other pieces of legislation, depending on the activities being carried out, place a different set of restrictions on the maximum number of hours for the working day. For instance, the Labor Code sets a 6-hour working day for bankers, and Brazilian federal regulatory standards ("Norma Regulamentadora" or NR) sets a 6-hour working day for telemarketers.

After the 8th hour of work, an employee may not work more than two overtime hours, as the working day cannot exceed the 10-hour legal limit. If the working day set out in the contract of employment is less than 8.48 hours, after the seventh hour of work, the employee can only work up to two overtime hours. The legislation offers for certain outstanding overtime circumstances exceeding the two daily overtime hours.