The Employment Law Cheat Sheet to Probation

Posted in : The Employment Law Cheat Sheet (by Philip Lee) on 22 February 2021
Patrick Walshe
Philip Lee
Issues covered: Probation; Contracts of Employment; Probation Checklist

What is probation? 

Probation is a period of time at the beginning of the employment relationship during which the employer assesses whether the employee is suitable for permanent employment. 

It’s common to refer to this as the new employee’s “probationary period”. 

How long do probationary periods typically last?

There are no mandatory probationary period limits as such (although a probationary period should never be longer than one year, and in practice it’s wise to cap at 11 months – for more on this, see below).

In practice, 3-6 months is the norm. 

Am I obliged to impose a probationary period in the first place?

No – although your ability to terminate the

Already a subscriber?

Click here to login and access the full article.

Don't miss out, register today!

Are you fully aware of the benefits of Legal-Island's Irish Employment Law Hub? We help thousands of people like you understand how the latest changes in Irish employment law impact your business through a mix of case law analysis and in-depth articles. All delivered right to your inbox.

We help you to understand the ramifications of each important case from Ireland and Europe.

We help you ensure that your organisation's policies and procedures are fully compliant with Irish law.

You will receive regular updates on Irish employment law including case law reviews, legislative changes, topical updates as well as answers to your burning questions through our Q&A feature.

You will have 24/7 access to the Employment Law Hub so you can research case law and HR issues when you need to.

Already a subscriber, now or Register

This article is correct at 03/03/2021

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Patrick Walshe
Philip Lee

The main content of this article was provided by Patrick Walshe. Contact telephone number is +353 (0) 1 2373700 or email

View all articles by Patrick Walshe