Dismissing an employee
Proper and weighted grounds referred to in the Employment Contracts Act are always required to give notice to a permanent employee. A particularly weighted reason is required for cancelling the employment relationship. Fixed-term employees cannot usually be given notice.
According to the Employment Contracts Act, your company may dismiss an employee only for proper and weighted reasons.
The reasons for dismissal may be financial or production-related if the work provided by your company has permanently diminished and you cannot provide the employee with other duties or training for them.
Temporary reduction in the amount of work does not entitle you to terminate employment. You also cannot terminate employment if you employ a new person to carry out similar work. The employee’s illness, participation in industrial action, opinions, social activities or resorting to means of legal protection are not considered to be valid grounds for dismissal.
Employment may also be terminated due to person-related reasons. The employee may neglect their obligations at work, for example, by constantly being late for work or not carrying out their work duties. The reason may also be that your employee is no longer able to cope with the work.
Take into account that your employee is under special protection against dismissal if the employee is a shop steward or elected representative, pregnant or on maternity, paternity, parental or child care leave.
Cancellation of an employment contract is a more severe measure than giving notice. When you cancel your employee’s employment contract, the employment relationship ends immediately and the notice period is not observed.
Particularly weighty reasons are required to cancel an employment contract, such as serious breach or neglect of obligations that have a significant impact on the employment relationship. In practice, such reasons include substance abuse at the workplace, violence, disclosure of a business secret or an unauthorised absence of several days.
If the employee is on a trial period, you can cancel the employment contract without a weighted reason as long as the reason is justified and proper.
Cancel the employment contract within 14 days of establishing the reason. Talk to the employee before you give notice of the cancellation. Give the notice to the employee in person.
You can also cancel the contract of a fixed-term employee on the same grounds.
Remember that you cannot cancel an employment contract on financial or production-related grounds.
The grounds for dismissal must be based on overall consideration. Take into account the nature of the work, the quality of the possible breach and the number of employees in your company.
If dismissal is based on financial and production-related reasons, explain them to the employee. Try to place the employee in a new work task or provide training for it. If your company employs at least 20 people, arrange cooperation negotiations before deciding on the termination of employment and also inform the TE Services of the negotiations.
If the reason for the termination of employment is related to the person, arrange to hear the employee before giving notice. If the employee has neglected his or her obligations, you cannot usually terminate the employment before giving a warning. Give the warning in writing so that there is proof of the warning and its date. If the employee’s conduct does not improve, you can start the process of terminating employment.
Always issue the notice of termination in writing and give it to the employee in person. Comply with the periods of notice. Note that fixed-term employees cannot usually be dismissed.