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Democratic Republic of the Congo Leave Laws & Holidays

Paid Time Off, Vacation Days (Annual Leave), Sick Leave, Maternity Leave, Paternity Leave, Bereavement Leave, Jury Duty Leave, Military Leave, and Voting Leave

Table Of Contents

Last updated on February 8, 2024.


Nota bene: The Democratic Republic of the Congo, with its capital Kinshasa, whose laws we cover in this article, distinguishes itself from the neighboring Republic of the Congo (capital Brazzaville).

Republic of the Congo leave laws are covered in a separate section of our blog.

Paid Time Off (PTO) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Vacation Quota (Annual Leave)

At least 12 days.

Employees in the Democratic Republic of the Congo are entitled to at least 1 vacation day for each month of work. This means that employees receive at least 12 days of vacation per year.

The exact number of vacation days is determined according to their age:

  • Employees over 18 years old receive a minimum of 1 day of paid vacation for each month of service.
  • Employees under 18 receive a minimum of 1.5 days of paid vacation for each month of service.

This vacation entitlement increases by 1 additional day per month for every five years of service.


In order to be eligible for these vacation days, an employee must have served at least 1 full year for the employer.

Payment of Unused Vacation on Termination

Cashing out of vacation leave is not allowed except during termination.

DR Congo leave laws state that employees are entitled to payment for unused vacation leave upon termination. An employer must provide this payment within 2 days after the end of the employment contract.

Sick Leave in the DR Congo

Up to 6 months.

Employees in DR Congo who are ill or injured are entitled to up to 6 months of sick leave. While on sick leave, the employee’s contract is put on hold, yet they still accumulate their leave entitlements.


During sick leave, employers are required to pay two-thirds (66%) of the employee’s regular wages.

Maternity and Paternity Leave

Maternity Leave in the DR Congo

14 weeks of partially paid leave.

A pregnant female employee in DR Congo is entitled to 14 weeks of partially paid maternity leave.

Maternity leave contains two parts:

  • Prenatal (before the birth): 6 weeks;

  • Postnatal (after the birth): 8 weeks.


During the whole duration of 14 weeks of maternity leave, employees receive their full regular salary (100%) and continue to receive all other employment benefits.

To be eligible for paid maternity leave, an employee must have six months of continuous service. If an employee does not have six months before the due date, she is entitled only to unpaid leave.

Paternity Leave in the DR Congo

2 days

There is no paternity leave as such required by DR Congo leave laws. However, an employee who has become a father is entitled to 2 working days after his wife has delivered a child.


Payment for paternity leave is only due for up to a maximum of fifteen working days per year.

Bereavement Leave in the DR Congo

Employees are entitled to 4 working days for the death of their spouse, a parent, or a family member who is in the first degree.

Employees are also entitled to 2 working days in the event of the death of a family member who is in the second degree.

Jury Duty Leave in the DR Congo

There is no legal definition of jury duty leave.

Military Leave in the DR Congo

There is no law defining military leave.

Voting Leave in DR Congo

The DR Congo leave laws do not specify voting leave.

Marriage Leave in the DR Congo

2 days

Employees in DR Congo have the right to take 2 working days for their marriage.

Employees are also entitled to 2 working days for the marriage of their child.

Public Holidays in DR Congo

9 national holidays

Every year, DR Congo observes 9 public holidays which generally last 12 days (some of them are celebrated for 2 or even 3 days). The Ministry of Labor announces the duration of these celebrations, which can extend over multiple days, at the year’s end for the next year. Employers are mandated to provide holiday pay and a day off, but only for the first day during any extended holiday period, as per national regulations.

A complete list of official holidays celebrated in the Democratic Republic of the Congo:
Date Holiday
January 1, Moday New Year’s Day
January 4, Thursday Martyrs of Independence Day
January 16, Tuesday Heroes’ Day (Anniversary of President Laurent Kabila’s Assassination)
January 17, Wednesday Heroes’ Day (Anniversary of Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba’s Assassination)
May 1, Wednesday Labor Day
May 17, Friday Liberation Day (National Day of the Revolution and the FARDC)
June 30, Sunday Independence Day
August 1, Thursday Parents’ Day
December 25, Wednesday Christmas

If a holiday falls on a Sunday, it is observed on a Saturday.


  1. Local Laws & Regulations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, https://www.atlashxm.com/en/countries/democratic-republic-of-the-congo

  2. Congo, Democratic Republic of the - Working time - 2011, https://www.ilo.org/dyn/travail/travmain.sectionReport1?p_lang=en&p_structure=2&p_year=2011&p_start=1&p_increment=10&p_sc_id=1001&p_countries=CD&p_print=Y

  3. DRC PEO & Employer of Record, https://wehireglobally.com/republic-of-the-congo/

Check out our Leave Laws page to learn more about laws in various countries.

All materials have been prepared for general information purposes only to permit you to learn more about this region's leave laws. The information presented is not legal advice, is not to be acted on as such, and may not be current. Please contact your local legal counsel to learn more about the leave laws in your country.

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