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In Spain, the application of collective agreements is essential in the labor sector, as it regulates working conditions and the rights of workers in a specific sector or company. Collective agreements are negotiated agreements between worker representatives and employers, and are binding for both parties. However, it is common for workers to ask themselves: What Collective Agreement applies to me?

There are different types of collective agreements in Spain, such as company agreements, sectoral agreements, and state agreements. Labor regulations establish that the applicable agreement for a worker will be the one in force in their company or sector, and that in case of conflicts between agreements, the one of higher scope will prevail.

Furthermore, case law has established that if no specific Collective Agreement is applicable, the one indicated in the employment contract will apply. This was reiterated in the ruling STS 5913/2023 – ECLI:ES:TS:2023:5913, where the plaintiff sought the application of the General Commerce Agreement in Malaga, instead of the Collective Agreement for Commerce in Madrid that was being applied to them. According to the court’s decision, the plaintiff had been working for the company The Phone House Spain, S.L.

The High Court resolved the matter based on its previous doctrine:

“The Court considers, like the Public Prosecutor, that the correct doctrine corresponds to the appealed ruling, given that, proven that the predominant activity of the company consists of commercializing and acting as an intermediary distributor between the different telecommunications operators and their final customers for the realization of offers and processing of subscriptions between said operators and customers, it is clear that said activity does not fall under either the collective agreement for Various Commerce of the Community of Madrid, or the Collective Agreement for Commerce in General of Malaga and its province. Consequently, if there is no applicable agreement, nothing prevents the parties from freely agreeing to apply one of those agreements, in accordance with the provisions of art. 3.1.c ET, in relation to arts. 1089, 1091 and 1255 CC, not violating, therefore, the provisions of art. 37.1 CE, or arts. 82 and 85.1 and 2 ET, since the aforementioned agreement had a lawful purpose, as no agreement was applicable, which by itself prevents conditions less favorable or contrary to legal provisions and collective agreements from being established in it.”

Therefore, if there is no other applicable Collective Agreement, the parties can agree on what will

be applied, being able to govern their relationship according to another Agreement. The application of one Collective Agreement or another is very relevant to determine the base salary and its updates, vacations, professional category, etc. Although it should be noted that the Agreement should always act as a minimum standard, it is possible to improve its content by agreement with the employer, such as with conditions agreed upon in the employment contract itself.

If you have any doubts about your employment contract or the application of a specific Collective Agreement, you can schedule an appointment and consult our working method and fees. At Roji Abogados, we are a multidisciplinary team specialized in different areas of law with our main office in Málaga. We can travel to assist you and also provide online services. Schedule an appointment or get information:


2.- 952 211 011 and 607 202 361

3.- Send a message to Roji Abogados via WhatsApp.

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