Switch to summer time: how should shift workers be paid?

Author: Alexia Buyl (Legal Expert)
Read time: 3min
Publication date: 21/03/2024 - 08:59
Latest update: 21/03/2024 - 09:01

On Sunday, 31 March 2024, we will be switching to summer time, which means setting our clocks forward one hour (at 2 a.m. it will actually be 3 a.m.).

This switch to summer time can pose difficulties for calculating the remuneration of certain categories of workers.

A CBA concluded in the National Labour Council settles the problem of calculating the remuneration of shift workers, who are not paid a lump sum per month.

Shift workers: what do you need to do?

There are two solutions:

  • If the work organisation allows it, arrange the shifts in such a way  that the team that worked the fewest hours during the switch to summer time (i.e. the night of 30 to 31 March) is the one that works the most during the switch to winter time.

In fact, during the switch to summer time, these workers will work less but will keep their normal daily remuneration. As a result, during the switch to winter time, these workers will work more without receiving any additional remuneration, as this extra hour worked has already been paid for during the switch to summer time.

  • If it is not possible for you to carry out this rotation, please observe the following procedure:

    • workers who are employed for 7 hours (or less) during the switch to summer time (i.e. the night of 30 to 31 March) must be paid a remuneration corresponding to that of a normal day;

    • workers who are employed when switching to winter time for longer than a normal day must be paid for the hours actually worked.


In a company, working time is divided into 3 successive shifts (A, B and C), each lasting 8 hours.

Shift B worked the night shift during the switch to summer time  (i.e. the night of 30 to 31 March). This means the workers will have worked 7 hours. They will receive a remuneration corresponding to 8 hours worked.

When switching to winter time, there are two possible scenarios:

  • Either shift B also works the night shift: the workers will work 9 hours, but will only receive a remuneration for 8 hours' work (for the 9th hour, they have already received an advance remuneration when switching to summer time);

  • Or the A or C shift works the night shift: the workers will work for 9 hours and will receive a remuneration for 9 hours’ work.

In short

Night shift during the two “time changes”

Number of hours paid during the switch to summer time (for 7 hours actually worked)

Number of hours paid during the switch to winter time (for 9 hours actually worked)

Identical team



Different teams



Source: Collective bargaining agreement no. 30 of 28 March 1977 concerning remuneration problems for certain workers during the switch to summer and winter time, made compulsory by the Royal Decree of 16 July 1998, Belgian Official Gazette of 11 August 1998.

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