Workers have a number of rights when it comes to working in Ireland.
There are a range of rights for those who are categorised as employees. These rights are not the same as the rights for the self-employed (including independent contractors).
The maximum average working week for most employees cannot exceed 48 hours. However, this does not mean that you can never work more than 48 hours. You can, but you cannot work for more than 48 hours a week on average.
This average can be calculated differently for people working in different industries:
it is 4 months for most employees
it is 6 months for employees working in security, hospitals, prison or working for a utility providing gas or electricity
it is 12 months where an agreement is in place between employees and the employer - this must be certified by the Labour Court
All full-time employees are entitled to 9 public holidays each year. If you have to work on a public holiday you are entitled to either an extra day's pay or an extra day's holiday.
If you work part-time you must have worked at least 40 hours in total over the 5 weeks immediately before the public holiday. If you work part-time and the public holiday falls on a day you don't work - then you are entitled to 20% of your pay for that day.
Overtime is seen as a contractual issue in Ireland. Your employment contract should state if you have to work overtime and the rate of pay you will get if you do work it.
There is no legal right to sick pay but your employer may decide to pay you while you are off sick.