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> GOVERNANCE - home > Employment protection legislation database - EPLex

Substantive requirements for dismissals


Armenia - 2018    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 115 LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 113 LC


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; language; participation in a lawful strike; lawfully taking leave
Remarks:
  • Art. 114 LC


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers on temporary leave following an occupational disease or a work injury
Remarks:
  • Art. 119 provides that any elected representative of workers may be dismissed only with the authorization by the representative body of workers.

    On temporary work incapacity, see art. 118 LC


Austria - 2016    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: No

Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none
Remarks:
  • No grounds for dismissals required in the laws reviewed. This does not result in a total freedom to terminate the contract: it must be understood in light of the existence of prohibited grounds.

    For summary dismissals, important reasons are required: sec. 1162 CC. Are considered as "important reasons" those reasons relating to the worker's conduct or capacity (see sec. 82 Commerce Regulations, sec. 27 White-collar employees Act).


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; age; trade union membership and activities; performing military or civil service; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Under the Federal Equal Treatment Act (2004, as amended in 2005), are prohibited in connection with dismissals, discrimination on the grounds of sex (including marital and family status), ethnicity, religion, age and sexual orientation (sec. 3 (7) and 17 (1) 7)).
    On pregnancy and maternity leave, see: Maternity Protection Act, sec. 10.
    In addition, sec. 105 (3) 1) WCA provides a list of inadmissible reasons for dismissals: trade union activities (and assimilated : works council members, health and safety representatives..), absence as a consequence of military or civil service, filing a complaint against the employer (well-founded claims in respect of entitlement or benefits arising out of the employment contract).
    When contested before the Court, the judge will assess the existence of prohibited grounds for dismissal or whether it consititutes an unfair dismissal (verpönte Kündigungsmotive or sozialwidrige Kündigungsmotive).



Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; older workers/workers on the verge of retirement; workers with disabilities; workers performing military/alternative service
Remarks:
  • The following categories can only be dismissed with prior authorization from the court and only under specific grounds:
    * Pregnant women and women on maternity leave: sec. 10 Maternity Protection Act (as an exception to the general prohibition of dismissal);
    * Employees on parental leave: sec. 7 and 8f Parental Leave Act and 10 Maternity Protection Act (furthermore, even if an employer terminates a pregnant women on the grounds other than her pregnancy for up to 4 months after she gave birth, the female employee who is dismissed only has to prove the probability that the termination was actually due to the pregnancy, so as to invalidate the termination, sec. 10 8) Maternity Protection Act)
    * Works council members: sec. 120 to 122 WCA;
    * Employee performing military service or alternative service.

    In addition, dismissal of a disabled worker requires the prior consent of the invalidity board (sec. 8, Disabled Persons Act).

    Lastly, an employer who intends to terminate an older worker's contract with a tenure of more than 2 years is required to take social aspects (difficulties in finding a job) into account (sec. 105 3) 2. b) WCA).


Azerbaijan - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 71 (3) and Art. 76 LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 70 LC

    In 2011, an amendment added employees working in a state-financed enterprises that reach working age limit to the list of Art. 70.
    (source: 17 May 2011 #127-IVQD)


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; parental leave; state of health
Remarks:
  • Art 79(1) LC: Pregnant women, single parent, people raising children under the age of 3, workers who temporarily lost an ability to work, workers with diabetes or scattered sclerosis, members of a trade union or political party, workers with limited health capabilities under the age of 18 or with a severe disability, during negotiations of collective bargaining.

    Prohibited ground for a dismissal on the basis of race, sex, religion, together with other grounds are listed in Art. 16(1) LC on “Non-discrimination in labour relations”.ns”.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers performing military/alternative service; minors
Remarks:
  • Art. 80 LC provides that the employer has to ask the authorization of the trade union to dismiss any member of the trade union.

    Art. 255 prohibits the dismissal of workers under 18 for the lack of professional competency.

    Art. 77 LC provides protections for workers performing military/alternative service.


Belgium - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • In previous years, there was no general obligation to motivate the dismissal. Only blue-collar workers were expressly protected against unfair dismissal by their employer on the basis of Art.63 ECA. White-collar workers could only invoke the theory of abuse of rights ("théorie de l'abus de droit") if they considered that they had been unfairly dismissed.

    With effect from 1 April 2014 -- the date of entry into force of Collective labour agreement No. 109 -- any dismissed worker belonging to the private sector, whether a blue-collar worker or a white-collar worker, has the right to be informed by his employer about the concrete reasons that led to his/her dismissal. However, the Collective labour agreement No. 109 does not apply to dismissals that take place during the first 6 months of employment (Art. 2(2)).

    The theory of abuse of rights may still be invoked by both private and public sector workers when they feel they have been wronged as to the reason of their dismissal.

    For further information:
    Collective Labour Agreement No 109, 18 February 2014, on the motivation of dismissal.
    http://www.cnt-nar.be/CCT-COORD/cct-109.pdf

    See also:
    http://www.emploi.belgique.be/defaultTab.aspx?id=42146


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none; none
Remarks:
  • The Law does not provide explicitly for the need to provide valid grounds to justify dismissals.

    However, the national 2014 Collective labour agreement No. 109 provides that a dismissal of a worker on a contract of employment of indefinite duration would be "manifestly unreasonable" if it is based on reasons that are not at all connected to the capacity or conduct of the worker, or to the operational requirements of the undertaking --and that would have not been decided by an employer "normal and reasonable" (Art. 8).

    The 2014 Collective agreement (Art. 3-7) provides that a worker can request to receive a notice on the reasons for his or her dismissal from the employer within 2 months after the dismissal took place. The employer then must respond within 2 months. (This rule does not apply to collective dismissals.)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; financial status; language; whistle blowing; birth; state of health; genetic information; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Three national laws constitute the legal framework for the fight against discrimination in the area of employment and occupation, including termination:

    - Loi générale du 10 mai 2007 tendant à lutter contre certaines formes de discrimination ;
    - Loi du 10 mai 2007 tendant à lutter contre les discriminations entre les hommes et les femmes;
    - Loi du 30 juillet 1981 tendant à réprimer certains actes inspirés par le racisme et la xénophobie.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers holding an elected position or discharging a public function
Remarks:
  • * Pregnant women: prohibition of dismissal (art. 40 LA).
    * Workers' representatives: see Act of 19 March 1991 establishing specific dismissal rules and procedures for workers' representatives on works councils and health, safety and working conditions committees.

    * Prevention advisers
    The law also provides for special procedures concerning termination of employment of "Prevention advisers" ("conseillers en prévention") in charge of prevention and protection at work. See: Act of 20 December 2002 on the protection of prevention advisers ("Loi du 20 décembre 2002 portant protection des conseillers en prévention")

    *Other categories of workers who benefit from special protection against termination of employment, see list:
    http://www.emploi.belgique.be/defaultTab.aspx?id=42149

    - protection en faveur du père qui fait usage de son congé de paternité
    - protection en faveur du parent adoptif
    - protection en faveur du médecin du travail
    - protection en faveur de certains mandataires politiques
    - protection en faveur du travailleur qui a obtenu un crédit-temps
    - protection en faveur du travailleur qui a obtenu une interruption de carrière
    - protection en faveur du travailleur qui a obtenu un congé éducation-payé
    - protection en faveur du travailleur ayant formulé certaines observations au sujet de modifications apportées au règlement de travail
    - protection en faveur du travailleur qui a déposé une plainte dans le cadre de la réglementation en matière d’égalité de traitement entre hommes et femmes; la réglementation relative à la violence ou le harcèlement moral ou sexuel au travail; la réglementation en matière de racisme et de xénophobie; la réglementation ayant trait à certaines formes de discrimination.


Bulgaria - 2016    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • The Labour Code does not specify whether the employer shall provide reasons for dismissal.
    However, see:
    - Art. 328 LC: exhaustive list of 12 situations when dismissal with notice is authorized;
    - Art. 330 LC: exhaustive list of 8 situations when dismissal without notice is authorized.
    - Art. 190 LC lists authorized grounds for disciplinary dismissal.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 328 LC lists 12 situations when dismissal with notice is authorized.

    Art. 330 LC lists 8 situations when dismissal without notice is authorized. Authorized grounds disciplinary dismissal are listed in art. 190 LC.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; family responsibilities; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • See Art. 8 (3) LC
    See also art. 4 (1) together with art. 21 (on termination of employment) of the Protection from Discrimination Act, 2003.
    In addition, "differences in the contract term and duration of working time" are listed as prohibited grounds of discrimination.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; confirmed injured workers
Remarks:
  • Art. 333 (1), (3), (5), (6) LC
    * Art. 333 (1) LC lists the categories of workers for which dismissal can only take place after consent of the labour inspectorate has been obtained: mothers of children under 3 years or spouses of persons who have entered their regular military service, employees reassigned due to health reasons, employees suffering from certain diseases, employees on permitted leave.

    * Protection for trade union representatives is provided in art. 333 (1) LC. Prior consent of the trade union is required when dismissal is based on certain grounds (partial closing down of the entreprise or staff cuts, reduction of the volume of work, lack of qualities for efficient work performance, lack of qualifications following changes in the requirement, disciplinary dismissals).

    *Pregnant women can only be discharged under certain grounds such as "force majeure", closing down of the enterprise, refusal to follow the enterprise in the case of relocation. Prior consent of the labour inspectorate is required for disciplinary dismissal (art. 333 (5) LC).
    A women on maternity leave can only be dismissed when the enterprise is closing down (art. 333 (6) LC).


Cyprus - 2012    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: No
Remarks:
  • Only for collective dismissals is justification explicitly requested in the legislation.
    (sec. 21 TEA (notification to the labour administration) and sec.4-5 CDA (consultation with the trade union representatives).
    No such provision exists with regard to individual dismissals based on the worker's conduct or capacity.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): economic reasons; worker's conduct; worker's capacity
Remarks:
  • Sec. 5 TEA. As a general rule, dismissal is deemed unfair unless the employer proves the existence of one of the reasons exhaustively listed in the legislation.
    "These are:
    - the employee fails to carry out his or her work in a reasonably efficent manner,
    - the employee becomes redundant,
    - termination is due to an act of god or force majeure,
    - the contract is for a fixed-term and has expired or the employee has reached the normal age of retirement,
    - the employment relationship cannot be expected to continue (the employee is guilty of gross misconduct, a criminal offence or immoral behaviour in the course of his or her duties, the employee repeatedly disregards his or her work and duties)"
    (see European Commission, Termination of Employment Relationship - Legal situation in the following Member States of the European Union: Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, 2007, p. 51.)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; race; colour; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; parental leave; participation in a lawful strike
Remarks:
  • Sec. 6 TEA
    See also, European Commission Study, TER, 2007, p.56.


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • See: Maternity Protection Act (No. 100(I)/97, as amended in 2011), sec. 4:
    Prohibition to give notice for termination to pregnant women after the announcement of pregnancy and up until 3 months after the expiry of the maternity leave and to women on adoption leave. However, this does not apply when the employed woman is found guilty of a serious offence or behaviour justifying termination of the employment relationship, when the undertaking ceases its activities, or when the contract period has come to an end (sec. 4B)


Czech Republic - 2010    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Sec. 50 (4) LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Sec. 52 LC provides for a list of valid reasons for dismissal that relate to the worker's conduct, the worker's capacity, or economic reasons.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; language; property; birth; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • No list of prohibited grounds in the LC but a general prohibition of "any form of discrimination in labour relations" (sec. 16(2) LC).
    There is however an express reference to non discrimination for "claiming rights ensuing from the labour relations in a lawful manner" (Sec. 14(2) LC)
    A list of prohibited grounds with relation to discrimination in labour relations is provided in sec. 4 (2) of the Employment Act (2004).

    Note that the adoption of an Anti-discrimination Act has been discussed at the Parliament but no agreement has been reached so far (2009).


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers performing military/alternative service; workers holding an elected position or discharging a public function
Remarks:
  • Sec. 53 (1) LC establishes a prohibition of notice during a "protection period". That applies to:
    * pregnancy
    * maternity and parental leave
    * recognized temporary inability to work due to illness or injury
    * military obligations
    * unpaid leave to exercise of a public office
    * night workers temporary unfit
    Note that except for pregnant women and employee on maternity or parental leave, the protection is not absolute (sec. 54 LC)
    Sec. 61 (2) LC: Special protection for trade union's representatives: mandatory consent of the trade union prior to dismissal.


Denmark - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • - Sec. 2 (7) ESEA : At the employee's request, the employer must state the reason for dismissal. This provision only applies in respect of white-collar employees.

    - Sec. 4 of the General Agreement (1973) concluded by the Danish Employers' Confederation and the Danish Confederation of trade Unions states that "in the case of dismissal of an employee who has been employed in a company for at least nine continuous months, the employee concerned is entitled to request the reason for his dismissal in writing".


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none
Remarks:
  • No ground for dismissals required in the laws reviewed.
    valid grounds may be established through collective agreements.
    This does not result in a total freedom to terminate the contract: it must be understood in light of the existence of prohibited grounds.
    In addition sec. 2b(1) ESEA provides for the employer's obligation to pay compensation if the dismissal of an employee with at least 12 months' service which is not considered to be reasonably justified by the conduct of the employee or the circumstances of the enterprise.
    (see also sec. 3 ESEA)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; parental leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • See anti-discrimination regulation:

    - The Consolidation Act on Equal treatment of Men and Women as regards Access to Employment, 28 June 2006, prohibits discrimination due to sex. The Act also lays down special rules of the burden of proof in cases were an employee is dismissed during pregnancy, adoption or maternity.

    - The Act on Discrimination on the Labour Market, 16 December 2008 as amended in December 2014, prohibits both direct and indirect discrimination due to race, colour, religion, political opinion, sexual orientation, age, disability or national, social or ethnic origin.

    - The Act on Protection against Dismissal due to Organisational Matters, 8 May 2006, protects employees against dismissal due to membership or non membership of a specific trade union and other organisation.

    On temporary illness: see sec. 5 (1) ESEA.

    Without good cause:
    Sec. 2b ESEA: dismissal not considered reasonably justified by the conduct of the employee or the circumstances of the enterprise entail compensation.
    Sec. 3 (1) ESEA: an employer who is terminating the employment relationship without a "good cause" shall pay compensation.


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • - See art . 7 ESEA and the Consolidation Act on Equal treatment of Men and Women as regards Access to Employment, 28 June 2006 that lays down special rules of the burden of proof in cases were an employee is dismissed during pregnancy, adoption or maternity.



Estonia - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 95(2) ECA.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Under the ECA, an employer can terminate an employment contract (referred to in the law as "extraordinary cancellation") only for a good reason as provided for in this Act and in accordance with the statutory prior notice requirements (art. 87 ECA).
    The ECA provides a list of valid reasons for termination of employment by the employer which fall within 2 categories: reasons relating to the employee personally (art. 88 ECA) and economic reasons (art. 89 ECA).
    Reasons relating to the employee personally:
    - decrease in capacity for work due to the state of health,
    - decrease of capacity for work due to insufficient work skills, - breach of duties,
    - appearance at work in a state of intoxication,
    - commission of a theft, fraud or an act bringing about the loss of the employer's trust in the employee,
    - bringing about a third party's distrust in the employee,
    - wrongfully causing damages to the employer's property,
    - violation of the obligation to maintain confidentiality or violation of the restraint of trade clauses.
    Economic reasons:
    - if the continuance of the employment relationship on the agreed conditions becomes impossible due to a decrease in the work volume, reorganisation of work or other cessation of work (lay-off).


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Anti-discrimination provisions:
    The Equal Treatment Act prohibits discrimination on the grounds of of nationality (ethnic origin), race, colour, religion or other beliefs, age, disability or sexual orientation in certain areas including in relation to employment and specifically refers to termination of employment (see art. 1(1) together with art. 2(1)2) and 2(2)2) ETA).
    In addition the Gender Equality Act establishes the prohibition on discrimination based on sex (which also cover pregnancy and child-birth, parenting, performance of family obligations or other circumstances related to gender, and sexual harassment) in the professional life including in relation to termination of employment (see art. 6(7) of the Act)

    Specific prohibited grounds for dismissal:
    Art. 92 ECA prohibits dismissal for the following reasons:
    - the employee is pregnant or has the right to pregnancy and maternity leave;
    - the employee performs important family duties;
    - the employee is not able, in the short term, to perform his/her duties due to his/her state of health;
    - the employee represents other employees;
    - a full-time employee does not want to continue working part-time or a part-time employee does not want to continue working full-time;
    - the employee is in military service or alternative service.
    If an employer terminates the employment contract of a pregnant woman or a employee raising a child under three years of age, it is presumed that such termination was based on pregnancy or family responsibilities, unless the employer proves that termination was based on a reason permitted under the ECA. Similarly, if an employer terminates the employment contract of employees' representative during their term of office or within one year of the expiry of his/her term of office, it is presumed that such termination was based on the fact that he/she represents other employees unless the employer proves that termination was based on a reason permitted under the ECA.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • - Pregnant women and workers with family responsibilities:
    Art. 93 ECA prohibits the employer from making redundant a pregnant woman or a woman who has the right to pregnancy and maternity leave or a person who is on parental leave or on adoption leave, except in the event of cessation of activities or bankruptcy.
    In addition, its is prohibited to dismiss a pregnant woman or a woman who has the right to pregnancy and maternity leave due to a decrease of the employee's capacity for work.
    These prohibitions only apply if the employee has notified the employer of her pregnancy or the right to pregnancy and maternity leave before receipt of a cancellation notice or within 14 days thereafter.

    - Workers' representatives:
    Art. 94 ECA provides that before terminating an employment contract with the employees' representative, an employer must seek the opinions of the trade union or the employees who elected him/her the person to represent them or the trade union. The employer is required to take that opinion reasonably into account and to provide justification if he/she disregards the employees' opinion.


Finland - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Sec. 2 & 3, chap. 9, ECA.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • See: sec.1-3, chap. 7, ECA.
    As a general condition, termination of employment cannot take place without a "proper and weighty reason". Two types of reasons are listed in the ECA: these are reasons connected with the employee's person (conduct, and capacity) and economic reasons.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; language; family members at the same workplace; parental leave; participation in a lawful strike; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • See:
    * Sec. 2, chap. 2, ECA and sec. 8 of the Non-discrimination Act (1325/2014):Prohibition of discrimination.
    * Sec. 2, chap. 7, ECA: Termination grounds related to the employee's person provides a list of invalid grounds.
    * Sec. 9, chap. 7, ECA : Termination in the case of an employee who is pregnant or on family leave.
    Sec. 4, chap. 1 ECA: Discriminatory termination during the probation period.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • * Workers' representatives:
    Sec. 10, chap. 7, ECA: Dismissal of a "shop steward or elected representatives" based on individual grounds requires the consent of the majority of the employees whom he represents.
    Economic dismissal of those representatives are authorized provided the job they occupy ceases completely and the employer has been unable to find another suitable job or to train the person for some other work.

    * Pregnant women and employees on family leave: sec. 9, chap. 7, ECA deems the dismissal to be based on employee's pregnancy or family leave and places the onus on the employer to prove that the dismissal is based on another reason.
    In addition, sec. 9, chap. 7 ECA states that the employer can terminate the employment relationship with employee on maternity, special maternity, parental or child care on economic grounds only in case of complete cessation of activities.


France - 2012    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Motives must be provided by the employer during a prior oral interview: art L1232-3 LC.
    In addition, the reasons behind the dismissals should be exposed in the letter of notification of the dismissal: art. L1232-6 LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Individual dismissal: must be justified by a serious and genuine cause ("cause réelle et sérieuse"): art. L 1232-1 LC
    Dismissal for economic reasons: must be equally justified by a serious and genuine cause : art. L 1233-3 LC.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; participation in a lawful strike; whistle blowing; gender identity; state of health; adoption leave; performing jury service; genetic information; ethnic origin
NOTE: This information has changed since the previous period covered.
Remarks:
  • Art. L 1132-1 LC: list of prohibited grounds of discrimination. [New in 2012: gender identity was introduced as a new prohibited ground by Law No 2012-954 of 6 August 2012]
    Art. L 1132-2 LC: lawful exercise of the right to strike.
    Art. L1132-3 LC: whistle blowing.
    Art. L1132-3-1 LC: performing jury service [New in 2011: new ground introduced by Law No 2011-939 of August 2011]
    Art. L 1225-4 LC: dismissal is prohibited during pregnancy, where this has been medically certified, during maternity leave (whether or not the worker uses the right to take the leave). Dismissal is nonetheless permitted in case of a serious fault of the worker unrelated to pregnancy, or when the employer is unable to maintain the contract of employment for reasons unconnected with pregnancy or confinement. The same protection against dismissal applies to a employee in adoption leave (see art. 1225-38 LC)


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave
Remarks:
  • *Workers' representatives:
    - Trade union representatives and other worker's representatives: art. L 2411-1 LC
    - Worker's adviser: art. 1232-14 LC
    * Pregnant women and women on maternity leave: art. L 1225-4 and L 1225-5 LC, employees on adoption leave: art 12225-38 LC
    Dismissal is prohibited during pregnancy, where this has been medically certified, during maternity leave (whether or not the worker uses the right to take the leave) and during the period of paid adoption leave, as well as during four weeks after the end of maternity and adoption leave. Dismissal is nonetheless permitted in case of a serious fault of the worker unrelated to pregnancy, or when the employer is unable to maintain the contract of employment for reasons unconnected with pregnancy, confinement or adoption. However, the dismissal or notice of dismissal may not take place during the periods of maternity and adoption leave.


Georgia - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: No

Valid grounds (justified dismissal): economic reasons; worker's conduct; worker's capacity
Remarks:
  • Art. 37 LC states that the following shall serve as grounds for termination of a labour agreement:
    a) economic circumstances, technological, or organizational changes making it necessary to reduce workforce;
    b) expiry of the labour agreement;
    c) completion of the work provided for by a labour agreement; d) voluntary written application for resigning from a position/work by the employee; e) written agreement between the parties;
    f) incompatibility of the employee’s qualifications or professional skills with the position held/work to be performed by the employee;
    g) gross violation by the employee of his/her obligation under an individual labour agreement or a collective agreement and/or rules and regulations;
    h) violation by the employee of his obligation under an individual labour agreement or a collective agreement and/or rules and regulations, if any of the disciplinary actions under such an individual labour agreement or a collective agreement and/or rules and regulations has already been administered in relation to the employee for the last one year;
    i) unless otherwise provided for by the labour agreement, a long-term disability, if the period of disability exceeds 40 calendar days in a row, or the total disability period within six months exceeds 60 calendar days, and, at the same time, the employee has used the leave indicated in Article 21 of this Law;
    j) entry into force of a court judgment or decision precluding the fulfillment of work; k) the final decision of finding a strike illegal delivered by the court in accordance with Article 51(6) of this Law;
    l) death of an employer as a natural person or of an employee;
    m) commencement of liquidation proceedings of an employer as a legal entity;
    n) any other objective circumstance justifying termination of the labour agreement.

    2. The violation of the obligation under the work rules and regulations set forth in Paragraph 1 (g) and (h) of this Article may serve as the basis for termination of a labour agreement only if the work rules and regulations are an integral part of the labour agreement.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; property; birth; exercise of the right to educational leave; lawfully taking leave; adoption leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Art. 2 LC


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave
Remarks:
  • Art. 36 LC on suspension of employment during which the employment cannot be terminated.


Germany - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Sec. 1 PADA


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Sec. 1 (2) PADA:
    Dismissal shall be socially justified by reasons relating to the employee's person or conduct or compelling operational requirements.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • The General Equal Treatment Act (2006, as amended in 2013) prohibits discrimination (including with respect of termination of employment) on the basis of race, ethnic origin, gender, sexual identity, religion, disability and age: sec. 1 and 2 (1) 2).
    Prohibition of dismissal during pregnancy and maternity leave: sec. 17 Maternity Protection Act (as amended in May 2017).
    Sec. 75 WCA obligation of the employer and the works council to ensure that the employees do not suffer any discrimination on the ground of race, creed, nationality, origin, political or trade union activity or convictions, gender or sexual identity.
    Sec. 612a CC prohibition to discriminate on the basis of the lawful exercise of his rights by the employee.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers with disabilities
Remarks:
  • - Pregnant women : sec. 17 Federal Act on Maternity Protection (2002, as amended in May 2017): prohibition of dismissal during pregnancy and up to 4 months after childbirth).
    - Maternity /parental leave: sec. 18 of the Federal Parenting Benefits and Parental Leave Act (2007, as amended in May 2017)
    - Disabled workers: sec. 85 Social Code, book IX: or consent of the integration office required.
    - Worker's representatives: sec. 15 PADA.
    Prohibition of dismissal except in case of serious misconduct (good cause).


Greece - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: No
Remarks:
  • The law does not require the employer to provide reasons to the employees when dismissing them.
    However, in the event of collective dismissal, the reasons for it shall be given to the workers' representatives (art. 3, Act 1387/1983).

    Employers can draft a social plan, but they are not obliged to do so (Law No. 1387/1983, art. 3(4)). However, during consultation, the parties should cover ways to avoid or reduce the need for dismissals and to mitigate their adverse effects (Law No. 1337/1983, art. 3(1); Law No. 1387/1983, art. 3(4)).


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none
Remarks:
  • - Contracts of an indefinite duration: No grounds are required. They can be terminated by either party, at any time, with notice or without notice (Act 2112/1920 and 3198/1955). In addition, severance pay has to be paid by the employer, the amount of which varies depending on whether notice was given or not, is compulsory.
    Although no grounds are required, this does not result in a total freedom of the employer to dismiss an employee for any reason since the employer shall act within the limits set by the general prohibition of any abuse of rights (art. 281 CC). If a Court holds that a dismissal constitutes an abuse of right, it will nullify it. According to case law, a dismissal "which is not justified by the well-meant interests of the employer is void" (i.e reasons not attributable to the dismissed employee such as incompetence, or economic reasons) (See: Yannakourou S., 2005, "The evolution of Labour Law in Greece" in European Commission, 2005, The Evolution of Labour Law 1992-2003, Volume 2, Luxembourg, p. 24).
    In addition, the employer's freedom to dismiss employees is also limited by the existence of prohibited grounds and by the existence of a special protection against dismissal for certain categories of workers (see below).

    -Fixed-term contracts:
    FTC can be terminated by either party at any time, if there is a serious reason justifying such termination (art. 672 CC). In such cases, no compensation is payable.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; filing a complaint against the employer; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; social origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; gender identity; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • * Specific prohibitions of dismissal:
    - The dismissal of a woman during her pregnancy and up to one year after giving birth is prohibited (Act No. 1302/1982). However, the dismissal can be valid if there is an important reason for it (i.e misconduct, severe negligence, poor performance...) (Art. 15 Act No 1483/1984).
    - Members of the trade union Board and the founding members of a trade union cannot be dismissed during the period of their office and one year thereafter (Act No. 1264/1982). However, dismissal is permitted if it is justified by a specific reason indicated in the Law and if it is approved by the Committee for the Protection of Trade Union officials. Under Law No. 1264/1982, certain union committee members are protected against dismissal, and the number of protected members depends on the size of the workplace. Protected individuals can only be dismissed for a narrow range of circumstances including disclosing confidential information or threatening / violent / abusive behaviour. As a general rule, dismissal based on trade union activities and membership is prohibited.
    - Any dismissal which takes place while the employee is performing military duties is null and void (Act No. 3514/1928)
    - The dismissal of a worker who is on annual leave is prohibited and will be considered null and void (Art. 5 and 6, Act 539/45)
    * Anti-discrimination provisions:
    -The Act No. 4443/2016 implementing the EU Directives 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC prohibits in its Art. 1 any discrimination on the the grounds of racial or ethnic origin, color, religious or other beliefs, disability, age or sexual orientation, gender identity, sex and family or social status in the field of employment. This includes a prohibition on discriminatory dismissals based on any of these grounds, see Art. 3(1)(c) of the act.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers performing military/alternative service; war veterans
Remarks:
  • The following categories of workers enjoy special protection against dismissal:

    * The dismissal of a woman during her pregnancy and up to one year after giving birth is prohibited (Act No. 1302/1982). However, the dismissal can be valid if there is an important reason for it (i.e misconduct, severe negligence, poor performance...) (Art. 15 Act No 1483/1984).
    * Members of the trade union Board and the founding members of a trade union cannot be dismissed during the period of their office and one year thereafter (Act No. 1264/1982). However, dismissal is permitted if it is justified by a specific reason indicated in the Law and if it is approved by the Committee for the Protection of Trade Union officials. Concerning workers' representatives, Law 4472/2017 introduces 2 additional reasons that allow the dismissal of this special category: (a )theft or embezzlement against the employer or its representative; and (b) unjustified absence of the employee which exceeds 3 days.

    - Any dismissal which takes place while the employee is performing military duties is null and void (Act No. 3514/1928).
    In addition, dismissal is prohibited within one year after the employee returns to work. Such dismissal can however be valid if it is justified by a serious reason and approved by a special committee (art. 7 Emergency Law 244/1936).
    - War veterans and members of their family can only be dismissed in accordance with a judicial decision recognizing their incapacity to work.
    - Dismissal of a worker who is on annual leave is prohibited and will be considered null and void (Art. 5 and 6, Act 539/45)


Hungary - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Sec. 66(1) LC (in the former LC sec. 89 (2) LC).


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Sec. 66(2) LC (in connection with his/her ability, his/her behavior in relation to the employment relationship or with the employer's operations), (in the former LC sec. 89(3)).


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; financial status; performing military or civil service; language; parental leave; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • - Race, colour, sex, etc. are listed as prohibited grounds for discrimination including in the context of termination of employment in the Equal Treatment Act (No. 125 of 2003). (Sec. 8 and 21 c) ETA).
    - In addition, pregnancy, parental leave; a leave of absence taken without pay for caring for a child (Sections 66(3), 128 and 130 LC).
    -Sec. 271(2) provides that no employee shall be dismissed on a ground of being a member of any trade union.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • * Prior consent of the higher ranking trade union body is requested in case of dismissal of an elected trade union representatives: sec. 273(1) LC (in former LC sec. 28 (1)).
    * The LC provides for protected periods during which ordinary dismissal can not take place: pregnancy, parental leave.: sec. 65 3 LC (in former LC sec. 90 (1)).

    New in 2012
    Section 89(7) of the previous Labour Code provided that workers who are between 57 and less than 62 years old, can only be dismissed in "particularly justified cases", unless they are already entitled to pension benefits. However, new Labour Code does not contain such provision.

    Contrary to the previous regulation, the new Labour Code allows for dismissal of an employee during the period of sick leave. Sec. 66(7) LC now states: The employer may terminate by notice the employment relationship of a worker who is receiving rehabilitation treatment or rehabilitation benefits due to the worker's capacity related to medical reasons if the worker can no longer be employed in his/her original position and no other job is available that is considered appropriate for his/her medical condition, or if the employee refuses to accept a job offered by the employer without good reason.


Italy - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 2 Act 604/1966 as amended by art. 1.37 of the Act 92/2012.

    As from Act 92/2012, reason of termination must be provided within the termination letter when the termination letter is served. Before Act 92/2012, the employee could request the justification within 15 days from the notification and the employer had 7 days to reply.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • A dismissal is unfair unless it is for a just cause (no notice required) or a justified motive (notice required)
    See art. 1 and 3 Act 604/1966 and art. 2119 CC.

    Under art. 2119 C.C., 'just cause', in broad terms, requires very grave conduct which, when evaluated both subjectively and objectively, constitutes a serious and irremediable reason that prevents the parties to continue the employment relationship even on an interim basis. Whether such a breach has occurred would normally have to be determined ultimately by a court, taking all relevant factors into account.
    Justified reason is defined as a very significant breach of contract made on the side of the employee (subjective justified reason) as well as ; or reasons inherent in the production process, the organization of work or the smooth running of the undertaking (objective justified reason) (sec. 3, Act 604).


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; race; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; exercise of a right; parental leave; participation in a lawful strike; whistle blowing; adoption leave
Remarks:
  • Art. 15 and Art. 18 Act 300/1970, as amended by Law 92/2012 .
    Art. 3 Act 604/1966
    Art. 35 Legislative Decree 198/2006
    Art. 54 Legislative Decree 151/2001
    Art. 18 (1) Act 53/2000.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • - Worker's representatives: there is a protection in art. 28 Act 300/1970 (workers' statute) which provides for specific simplified procedure for reinstatement following unfair dismissal. Specific remedies are also provided under Art. 18 Act 300/1970

    - Pregnant women, women on maternity leave, women with family responsibilities: see Legislative Decree 151 of 2001 on the protection of maternity and paternity. According to art. 54, dismissal is prohibited form the beginning of the pregnancy and up to a maximum of one year after the birth of the child.
    This prohibition does not however prevent an employer for dismissing a female employee in the event of serious misconduct (just cause) or in case of cessation of the activities of the employer.

    - Workers on paternity leave equally benefit from the protection against dismissal. (note however that under Italian law, a worker is entitled to paternity leave in limited situations: death of the mother, serious disability or abandonment by the mother or exclusive custody of the child to the father).

    - The prohibition of dismissal has also been extended to cover adoption leave (up until one year after the child has entered the family).


Kazakhstan - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 53 of the Labour Code


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 52 of the Labour Code states that:

    An employment contract with an employee on the initiative of the employer may be terminated in the following cases:
    1) liquidation of a legal entity employer or termination of the activities of an individual employer;
    2) reduction in staff numbers or positions;
    3) decrease in the volume of production, work performed and services provided, which led to worsening of the economic state of the employer;
    4) unfitness of the employee for the position held or work performed as a consequence of inadequate qualifications;
    5) unfitness of the employee for the position held or work performed as a consequence of health reasons hampering continued performance of the given work;
    6) repeated failure to verify the knowledge on safety and health or industrial safety issues by the employee responsible for ensuring the safety and health of the work of the organization carrying out production activities
    7) a negative result of work performed during a probationary period;
    8) absence of the employee from work without good reason for a period of three or more hours in a row during a single working day (work shift);
    9) presence of the employee at work under the influence of alcohol, narcotics or toxic substances (or their analogues), including in cases of consumption during the working day of intoxicating substances (or their analogues);
    10) refusal to undergo a medical examination to establish the fact of using substances causing a state of alcohol, narcotic, toxicomaniac intoxication, confirmed by the relevant act
    11) violation by the employee of the rules for labour safety or fire safety or traffic safety entailing or capable of entailing serious consequences, including injuries and accidents;
    12) theft (including minor theft) by the employee in the work place of other people’s property, its deliberate destruction or damage, as established by a sentence or court ruling that has come into legal effect;
    13) culpable actions or inaction on the part of an employee dealing with money or goods if these actions or inaction provide grounds for the employer to loose his trust in him;
    14) an immoral act carried out by an employee fulfilling educational functions that is incompatible with continued performance of the given work;
    15) divulgence by the employee of information constituting state secrets or other secrets protected by law that he acquired in connection with performance of his job duties;
    16) repeat failure by the employee to fulfil or duly fulfil his job duties, without good reason, provided a disciplinary sanction has been imposed thereon;
    17) knowing provision by the employee to the employer of false documents or information on conclusion of the employment contract, if the genuine documents or information might constitute grounds for refusal to conclude the employment contract;
    18) violation by the head of the employer’s executive body, his deputy or heads of subdivisions of the employer of their job duties resulting in material damage to the employer;
    19) termination of the employee’s access to state secrets in cases established by the laws of the Republic of Kazakhstan;
    20) absence of the employee from work for over two months in a row as a consequence of temporary disability, with the exception of cases when the employee is on maternity leave or if the relevant disease is included on the list of illnesses for which a longer term of disability is established, approved by the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
    For an employee disabled in connection with an industrial accident or occupational disease, his job (position) is retained until his working capacity is restored or disability established;
    21) a corruption-related crime committed by the employee and excluding, in accordance with a judicial act, the possibility of his continued work.
    22) continuation of the employee's participation in the strike after bringing to their attention the court's decision to recognize the strike as illegal or to suspend the strike;
    23) termination of authority of the head of the executive body, members of the collegial executive body of the legal persons, as well as in accordance with the Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan "On Joint-Stock Companies" employees of the internal audit service and the corporate sector by decision of the owner of the property of the legal entity or authorized by the owner of the legal persons;
    24) the employee's achievement of the retirement age established by clause 1 of Article 11 of the Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan "On Pensions in the Republic of Kazakhstan", with the right of annual extension of the term of the employment contract by mutual agreement of the parties;
    25) employees absence from work for more than one month, for reasons unknown to the employer.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; temporary work injury or illness; race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; language; property; gender identity; place of residence
Remarks:
  • Art. 52 of the Labour Code on the grounds for termination of employment
    Art. 54 of the Labour Code prohibits the termination in the cases of temporary incapacity for work, pregnancy, women with children under the age of three, single mothers with a child under the age of fourteen or a disabled child up to the age of eighteen, other persons raising this category of children without a mother
    Art. 6 of the Labour Code on prohibition of discrimination
    Art. 175 of the Labour Code on the right to strike



Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers with disabilities
Remarks:
  • Art. 52 of the Labour Code on the grounds for termination of employment
    Art. 54 of the Labour Code prohibits the termination in the cases of temporary incapacity for work, pregnancy, women with children under the age of three, single mothers with a child under the age of fourteen or a disabled child up to the age of eighteen, other persons raising this category of children without a mother-
    Art. 6 of the Labour Code on prohibition of discrimination
    Art. 175 of the Labour Code on the right to strike


Kyrgyzstan - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 83 and 85 LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 83 LC


Prohibited grounds: race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; financial status; language; property; place of residence; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Art. 9 LC


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • Art. 310 LC: special protection against any dismissal, except for economic reasons, for pregnant women and women with family responsibilities.

    Art. 84 LC: The employer is not entitled to dismiss any workers' representative without prior approval by the relevant body representing workers of the enterprise.


Luxembourg - 2012    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. L 124-5 (2) LC.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. L 124-5 (2) LC : this article requires that the reasons be genuine and serious ("motifs réels et sérieux").


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; race; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Except for marital status and pregnancy, those grounds are listed in art. L 251-1 LC (non-discrimination in employment including dismissal: art. L 251-2 1) c) LC).
    * Marital status: art. L 337-5 LC: No contractual clause can stipulate that the contract of a woman employee be terminated on the grounds that she got married.
    * Pregnancy and maternity leave: art. L 337-1 LC: Dismissal with notice is prohibited during pregnancy (as established by a medical certificate), during a period of 12 weeks after birth.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave
Remarks:
  • * Pregnant women /women on maternity leave: prohibition of dismissal: art. L 337-1 LC.
    * Workers' representatives: prohibition of dismissal: art. L 415-11 LC.


Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 72 LRA states that the employer is obliged to indicate the ground for termination, as stipulated by law or collective agreement and to substantiate the reason justifying termination. In addition, where the employer intends to dismiss a worker on the ground of misconduct, he/she must previously warn in writing the worker on the possibility of such dismissal in the event of further violations. (Art 73 LRA). Article 74(2) LRA provides for the obligation on the part of the employee to explain the reason for termination in the notice of dismissal as well as to provide indications on the legal remedies available and his/her rights to unemployment insurance. See also art. 85 LRA: the grounds for termination must be indicated in the dismissal decision.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • According to art. 71(2) LRA, the employer may only terminate the employment contract if there is a justified reason based on the worker's conduct ("personal reason of the employee") or operational needs of the employer (business reasons).
    Art. 76 LRA establishes 3 categories of "justified reasons for dismissal" as follows:
    - "personal reason", defined as the employee's inability to carry out employment obligations due to his/her conduct, lack of knowledge or capabilities;
    - "fault reason", defined as the employee's violation of contractual or other obligations arising from the employment relationship;
    - "business reason", defined as economic, organizational, structural, or similar reasons.
    See also: art. 79 and 80 LRA on "personal reasons" (respectively on failure to carry out employment obligations and unsatisfactory performance).
    In addition, art. 81 LRA provides for a non-exhaustive list of acts constituting a violation of work regulations and discipline justifying dismissal with notice whereas art. 82 LRA provides for a non-exhaustive list of acts justifying dismissal without notice.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; property; state of health; lawfully taking leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • - Non-discrimination:
    Art. 6 LRA prohibits discrimination against applicants or employees on the basis of race; skin colour; gender; age; health condition or disability; religious, political, or other conviction; trade union membership; national and social origin; marital status; sexual orientation; or other personal circumstances.
    Art. 71(4) LRA provides that any termination based on those above listed grounds shall be null and void.

    - Prohibited grounds of dismissal:
    Art 77 LRA provides a list of "unfounded grounds for termination", as follows:
    1) membership of a trade union or worker participation in union activities in accordance with the law and collective agreements;
    2) filing a complaint or participating in proceedings against the employer for violation of contractual and other obligations arising from the labour relation before an arbitration, judicial or administrative authorities;
    3) approved absence due to illness or injury, pregnancy, birth and parenthood and care of a family member;
    4) Using approved absence of work and annual leave;
    5) performing military service or military exercises and
    6) Other cases of suspension of the employment contract defined by the Law.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • Art. 101 LRA states that the employer shall not dismiss a woman during her pregnancy or while she is on a maternity leave, or during a leave of absence for child care.
    This prohibition also applies to fathers on parental or adoption leave.

    In addition, art. 200 LRA provides for a protection against dismissal for trade union representatives. A trade union representative can only be dismissed with the prior approval of the trade union. In case the trade union refuses to give approval, such approval can be given by the court. This protection applies during the whole period of the mandate and and at least two years after its expiration.


Moldova, Republic of - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 86 LC.
    Art 88 (1) a) LC on economic dismissal.
    In addition, the necessity of the dismissal is to be proved before the court by the employer (art. 89 LC).


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 86 LC provides for a list of valid grounds (24) for dismissal of an employee under a fixed-term contract and an indefinite-term-contract.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; place of residence
Remarks:
  • Art. 8 LC: general prohibition of discrimination in the sphere of employment. In addition to those grounds, are listed the place of residence and "other criteria not connected with professional qualities".
    *Art. 251 LC: prohibits dismissal of pregnant women, women on maternity leave or child nursing leave and workers who are taking care of children under 6 except in the cases of
    enterprise liquidation.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • *Art. 87 LC: dismissal of trade union representative is admitted only with the preliminary consent of the trade union body.
    Dismissal of a trade union member on certain grounds requires the preliminary consent of the trade union from the enterprise. In other cases, preliminary consultation with the trade union is required.

    *Art. 251 LC: prohibits dismissal of pregnant women, women on maternity leave or child nursing leave and workers who are taking care of children under 6 except in the cases of
    enterprise liquidation.


Montenegro - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 143c(2) LL: The dismissal decision shall contain the grounds for termination of employment, an explanation and a note indicating available legal remedies.
    (See also art. 143b LL: prior to any dismissal based on disciplinary grounds, the employer shall warn in writing the employee about the existence of reasons that can justify the dismissal. He/she must and to give him/her at least five days to respond.)

    Note: following the 2011 amendments, the relevant article numbers have changed but not their content.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's capacity; worker's conduct; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • New in 2011: The provision on valid grounds for dismissal has been substantially modified by the amendments to the LL adopted in December 2011.

    Art. 143(1) LL, as amended in December 2011 provides that "the employer may terminate the labour contract if there is a justified reason for such action" and gives an exhaustive list of 8 instances when termination of employment by the employer is authorized [instead of 16 under the 2008 LL] :
    "1. if an employee fails to meet the results of work defined by collective agreement, employer's act or contract of employment; in a period of not less than 30 days;
    2. if an employee fails to comply with obligations prescribed by the law, collective agreement and contract of employment, which shall comply with the law and the collective agreement;
    3. if an employee's behaviour is such that he/she cannot continue employment with the employer, in cases prescribed by the law and the collective agreement or employer's act, which shall comply with the law and the collective agreement;
    4. if an employee refuses to conclude an annex to the contract of employment referred to in Article 40 paragraph 1 items 1 and 2 of this Law [i.e: for the purpose of deployment to another adequate job, due to the needs of the process and organization of work - for the purpose of deployment to another position with the same employer, if the activity of the employer is of such nature that the work is performed in places outside the employer's headquarters, or employer's organization unit,];
    5. if an employee refuses to conclude an annex to the contract of employment referred to In Article 40 paragraph 1 Item 3 of this Law [i.e: regarding the definition of wages];
    6. if an employee abuses the right to leave for temporary inability to work;
    7. due to economic problems in operations;
    8. in case of technical and technological, or structural changes as a result of which an employee is no longer needed."

    [Prior to the amendments, art. 143 read as follows:
    The employer may terminate the labour contract "if there is a justified reason to do so regarding working capacity of the employee, his behaviour and needs of the employer"
    1) if the employee refuses to work in the job position that he is assigned to or refuses to fulfill duties at work referred to in the labor contract;
    2) if the employee does not comply with a labor discipline envisaged by the employer's act and the labor contract, i.e. if his behavior is such that he cannot continue working with the employer;
    3) with the expiration of the period for which the employment contract for a limited time is signed, i.e. with the expiration of the period of validity of the labor contract signed for a limited time;
    4) if the employee comes to work under the influence of alcohol or narcotics, drinks during work or uses narcotics;
    5) if the employee was unjustifiably absent from work for five consecutive business days, or seven business days with interruptions within the period of three months;
    6) if the employee fails to state his opinion on the offer or refuses the offer to conclude the annex to the labor contract, under Article 40, paragraph 1, items 1 and 2, within the deadline referred to in Article 41, paragraph 2 of this Law;
    7) if the employee fails to show adequate results during trial work;
    8) if the employee is provided with one of the rights based on redundancy under Article 93, paragraph 2, item 5 of this Law;
    9) if the employee refuses one of the rights that the employer offered him on the basis of the redundancy;
    10) when the severance pay is paid out to the employee on the basis of redundancy;
    11) if the employee fails to return to work within 30 days, under Article 76 paragraph 3 of this Law;
    12) if the employee gave false data regarding the performance of the activities that he concluded the labor contract for when starting to work, i.e. when entering employment, and during the employment;
    13) if a pecuniary fine is imposed on the employee for violation of duties at work two or more times within a period of one year;
    14) if the employee works for another employer under Article 58, paragraph 1 of this Law, without the consent of the employer where he is employed full time;
    15) if the employee contracts the activities within the scope of business activity performed by the employer to his own account or account of another person (unfair competition);
    16) and in other cases determined by the collective agreement."]


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; financial status; language; parental leave; whistle blowing; birth; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Art. 143a LL, a new provision introduced in December 2011, provides a list of prohibited grounds for termination, as follows:
    1) Temporary absence from work due to illness, accident at work or occupational disease;
    2) Maternity or parental leave, absence from work for child care and absence form work due to special child care;
    3) membership in a political organization, trade union, distinction based on personal characteristics of the employee (gender, language, ethnicity, social status, religion, political or other beliefs or other personal characteristics of the employee)
    4) acting as a representative of employees, in accordance with the law;
    5) in case an employee addresses trade unions or competent authorities for protection of employment rights in accordance with the law and contract of employment;
    6) in case an employee addresses the competent public authorities for reasonable suspicion of corruption or filing a complaint of such suspicion in good faith;
    7) in case an employee addresses or point out to the employer or relevant public authorities environmental threat connected to the operations of the employer.

    See also the following provisions which were already included in the 2008 LL:
    - Art. 5 LL prohibits discrimination of job seekers and employed persons on the grounds of gender, birth, language, race, religion, skin colour, age, pregnancy, health condition, disability, nationality, marital status, family responsibilities, sexual orientation, political or other belief, social backgrounds, financial status, membership in political and trade union organization or any other personal feature.
    - Art. 7(1)5) LL specifies that such discrimination shall be prohibited with regards to termination of employment.
    See also art. 108 LL: prohibition of dismissal on the grounds of pregnancy or during maternity leave, absence for child care, parental leave... (see remarks under special protection).

    Therefore, what is new in 2011 is the introduction of a comprehensive provision on prohibited grounds for dismissal in addition to scattered provisions on discrimination or specific protection against dismissal in certain situations. In addition, compared to the grounds already prohibited in the 2008 LL, new grounds have been introduced : temporary absence from work due to illness, accident at work or occupational disease; parental leave, absence from work for child care , and recourse to competent authorities where the following issues are at stake (infringement of employment rights, corruption, environmental threats)


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; confirmed injured workers; workers with disabilities
Remarks:
  • Art. 108 LL provides for protection due to pregnancy and child care:
    - It is prohibited to dismiss a female employee due to pregnancy and during maternity leave [minimum 38 days before childbirth and 45 days after, but allowed up to 365 days after childbirth] (art. 108(1) LL).
    - It is prohibited to terminate the employment of a the parent who works half time in order to take care of a child with severe development difficulties, a single parent of a child under seven years of age, or a child with severe disability. The law also specifies that they may not be declared redundant employees due to the introduction of technological, economic or restructuring changes [special child care leave](art. 108(1) and (2) LL)
    New in December 2011:
    The scope of the protection against dismissal has been extended. Art. 108(3) LL now prohibits dismissal during parental leave [minimum 45 days after childbirth may be up to 365 days] and absence from work due to child care.

    Art. 160(1) LL provides for specific protection of trade union representatives and in particular, states that they shall not be declared as redundant.
    New in December 2011: art. 143b(4) LL now provides for specific procedural requirements in the event of a disciplinary dismissal of a trade union member: prior warning notice must be communicated to the trade union of which the employee is a member, for the purpose of obtaining its opinion. The trade union must provide a statement with its opinion within 5 days.

    Art 94(3) LL provides for severance pay for workers suffering from disability (see under severance pay).


Netherlands - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 7:676 (2), 7:671a (6) CC.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Under Dutch law, t4 categories of dismissal are established:
    1) Termination via a prior permit from the Employment Insurance Agency UWV WERKbedrijf (former CWI) or a tripartite committee established by collective agreement. (for economic redundancy reasons or based on long term invalidity/sickness of an employee)
    2) Judicial rescission of the contract for other “reasonable grounds”, related to the employee’s conduct or capacity.
    3) Termination for “urgent causes”.
    4) Termination by mutual consent.

    1) Dismissal via prior authorization from the UWV WERKbedrijf, Art. 7:671a (1) CC: the UWV will grant the permit if it considers the dismissal to be based on one of the “reasonable grounds” listed in Art. 7:669 (3) (a) or (b) CC, i.e. a special economic condition of the enterprise, which requires the termination of employees, based on a prognosis of the economic development of the enterprise for at least the next 26 weeks; or a repeated or ongoing absence of an employee from work due to a sickness (which must last for at least 2 years, with breaks of at most one month at a time, see Art. 7:670 1) a) CC).
    Next to the UWV, the decision on the authorization of collective dismissals based on economic reasons can also be referred to a special committee, which has been established by a tripartite collective agreement, between the employer and worker representatives, approved by the competent administrative authority, Art. 7:671a (2) CC.
    Furthermore, the DR lists several special circumstances under which an economic dismissal cannot be considered reasonable, see Art. 2 to 8 DR, e.g. if the employer outsources the work of the dismissed employees to external contractors, self-employed persons or person employed under FTCs.
    A refusal to grant authorization for the termination by both the UWV or the tripartite committee can be appealed to the district court (Cantonal Court), Art. 7:671b (1) (b) CC.

    2) Judicial rescission: " The employer can request the validation of a termination of an employee at the district court (Cantonal court) based on any of the “reasonable grounds” listed in Art. 7:669 (3) (c) – (h) CC (see Art. 7:671b (1) (a)). These are the worker's inability to perform his or her job, in case the employer has given the employee the opportunity to improve his or her work capacity; a serious refusal to follow instructions of the employer; any other serious misconduct of the employee OR any other comparable circumstances.(More detailed regulations on the determination if a specific ground based on which an employee was terminated was “reasonable” are contained in Art. 2-8 of the DR)

    3) The employer can at any time declare a summary dismissal. For a summary dismissal, important reasons are required. Such important reasons are those circumstances that warrant a termination of the employment with immediate effect for an "urgent cause”, Art. 7:677 CC. A non-exhaustive list of acts which amount to urgent cause is provided in Art. 7:678 CC. Such acts relate to the worker's conduct, i.e. acts of fraud or other grave misconduct.

    4) A termination of an employee based on his or her written consent is always possible, however the employee is granted the right to withdraw any given consent within 14 days, Art. 7:670a (2) and (5), 7:671 (2) CC.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; whistle blowing
Remarks:
  • Race, sex; religion (..) are not listed as prohibited grounds for dismissal as such, but as invalid grounds for discrimination with regards to termination of employment:
    - Equal Treatment Act (1994, as amended in 2015): Art. 1 and 5 1) f;
    - Equal Treatment (Disability and chronic illness) Act (2003), Art. 1 and 4 b).
    - Art. 7:646 CC on sexual discrimination with respect to employment (incl. pregnancy, maternity, childbirth);
    - Equal Treatment in Employment (Age Discrimination) Act (2003): Art. 3 c)

    In addition, an employer is prohibited to give notice:

    1) when the employee is unable to perform his/her work due to ill-health, unless the incapacity has lasted for at least two years (Art. 7:670 (1) CC) or unless the employee has refused to comply with reasonable instructions from a doctor or the employer or refused to perform suitable alternative work (Art. 7:670a CC);
    2) when an employee who is fit to perform the agreed work is pregnant, during her/his maternity leave or paternity leave or the six weeks following the end of that period (Art.7:670 (2) CC) or when the employee is taking adoption leave (Art. 7:670 (7) CC).;
    3) when an employee is doing military service or performing alternative service (Art. 670 (3) CC);
    4) to a member of a works council or any of its committees (Art. 7:670 (4) CC); the ban on terminating Works Council members and/or candidates is however not applicable in case of collective dismissals based on economic grounds, if it can be expected that the employee will lose the position granting him or her the termination protection within 4 weeks, Art. 7:671a (11), 7:670a (3) (c) CC, or, in case of a termination based on the worker’s conduct or capabilities, if the termination visibly does not relate to the employee’s position in the Works Council or is in his or her interest, Art. 7:671b (6) CC.;
    5) because the employee has filed a claim, whether or not brought to court, for sex discrimination, for unequal treatment based on working-hours or employment contract (fixed-term or permanent) (Art. 7:646, 647, 648, 649 CC);
    6) to an employee who had been a member of a works council or any of its committees less than two years prior to the notice, or is eligible for election to the works council, unless with prior judicial approval, Art. 7:670(10) CC. The latter will only be given when the employer can make a convincing case that the reason for termination is not related to the employee's duties for the works council.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers performing military/alternative service
Remarks:
  • An employer is prohibited from giving notice:
    1) when an employee who is fit to perform the agreed work is pregnant, during her maternity leave or the six weeks following the end of that period (Art.7:670 (2) CC);
    2) when an employee is doing military service or performing alternative service (Art. 670 (3) CC);
    3) to a member of a works council or any of its committees (Art. 7:670 (4) CC); the ban on terminating Works Council members and/or candidates is however not applicable in case of collective dismissals based on economic grounds, if it can be expected that the employee will lose the position granting him or her the termination protection within 4 weeks, Art. 7:671a (11), 7:670a (3) (c) CC, or, in case of a termination based on the worker’s conduct or capabilities, if the termination visibly does not relate to the employee’s position in the Works Council or is in his or her interest, Art. 7:671b (6) CC.;
    4) to an employee who had been a member of a works council or any of its committees less than two years prior to the notice, or is eligible for election to the works council, unless with prior judicial approval, Art. 7:670(10) CC. The latter will only be given when the employer can make a convincing case that the reason for termination is not related to the employee's duties for the works council.


Notes / Remarks
Under Dutch law, an employer who intends to dismiss an employee must, based on the nature of the dismissal (economic or due to the worker’s conduct or capacity), either refer to:
1) termination via a prior permit from the administrative authority UWV WERKbedrijf (in case of economic dismissals or dismissals due to long-time sicknesses), or
2) judicial rescission of the contract (in case of the other types of dismissals).
In addition, summary dismissal is permitted provided there is an "urgent cause".

Norway - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • According to Art. 15-4 (3), the employer is required to state the reasons for the dismissal, only upon request of the employee in writing.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • Sec. 15-7 of the Working Environment Act reads as follows:
    (1) Employees may not be dismissed unless this is objectively justified on the basis of circumstances relating to the undertaking, the employer or the employee.
    (2) Dismissal due to curtailed operations or rationalisation measures is not objectively justified if the employer has other suitable work in the undertaking to offer the employee. When deciding whether a dismissal is objectively justified by curtailed operations or rationalisation measures, the needs of the undertaking shall be weighed against the disadvantage caused by the dismissal for the individual employee.
    (3) Dismissal owing to an employer's actual or planned contracting out of the undertakings ordinary operations to a third party is not objectively justified unless it is absolutely essential in order to maintain the continued operation of the undertaking.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; nationality/national origin; age; disabilities; performing military or civil service; parental leave; adoption leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • * General protection against discrimination:


    - Discrimination on the grounds of political views, membership of a trade union or age is prohibited according to Art. 13-1 (1) WEA.

    - On Discrimination on the basis of gender, see Art. 13-1 (4) WEA and the Gender Equality Act (No. 59 of 2013) which provides in Art. 5 and 17(e) that discriminatory terminations based on gender are prohibited.

    - Discriminatory terminations on the basis of ethnicity, religion and cultural orientation are prohibited by Art. 6 and 16(e) of the Act on Discrimination based on Ethnicity (No.60 of 2013)) [see also art. 13-1 (5) of the Working Environment Act].
    • - Discriminatory terminations on the basis of disability are prohibited by Art. 5 and 21(e) of the Act on Discrimination based on Disability (No.61 of 2013) [see also art. 13-1 (6) of the Working Environment Act].
    • - Discriminatory terminations on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity are prohibited by Art. 5 and 15(e) of the Act on Discrimination based on Sexual Orientation (No.58 of 2013) [see also art. 13-1 (6) of the Working Environment Act].

    *Protection against certain types of dismissals:

    - Protection against dismissal in the event of sickness
    (Art. 15-8 WEA): Prohibition to dismiss an employee on the grounds of his/her incapacity to work (caused by an accident or illness) for the first 12 months after becoming unable to work. This does not prevent the employer from giving notice of termination on other grounds. However, there is a legal presumption that absence from work owing to accident or illness is the reason for dismissal during the protected period, unless other grounds are shown by the employer to be highly probable.

    -Protection against dismissal during pregnancy or following the birth or adoption of a child (Art. 15-9 WEA):
    Prohibition to dismiss an employee on the grounds of pregnancy. Pregnancy will be deemed to be the reason for the dismissal of a pregnant employee unless other grounds are shown to be highly probable.
    An employee on maternity leave, parental leave (including adoption leave) for up to one year must not be given notice of dismissal that becomes effective during the period of absence if the employer is aware that the absence is for such a reason or the employee notifies the employer without undue delay that the absence is for such a reason. If the employee is lawfully dismissed during this period, the notice will be valid but the period must be extended accordingly.

    - Protection against dismissal in connection with military service (Art. 15-10 WEA): Prohibition to dismiss an employee owing to leave of absence to perform military service. Unless other grounds are shown to be highly probable, such service will be deemed to be the reason for dismissal immediately prior to or during the period of absence.


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • No specific protection against dismissal other than the prohibition of discriminatory dismissal in respect of employees performing military service, employees temporarily unable to work, and pregnant employees (see above). This means that the employer can dismiss those employees provided that it is justified on other grounds (e.g. in the case of collective redundancies). However, the WEA establishes legal presumption that the dismissals are based on prohibited grounds if they happen during a certain period unless other grounds are shown to be highly probable.

    Employees on maternity and parental leave enjoy protection in the sense that they cannot be given notice of dismissal (on any grounds) that becomes effective during the period of absence provided that the employer is aware that the absence is for such a reason.
    If the employee is lawfully dismissed during this period, the notice will be valid but the period must be extended accordingly (art. 15-9 WEA).


Notes / Remarks
NOTE: Starting with the 01 January 2018, the prohibition of discriminatory dismissals based on all of the mentioned grounds is solely regulated by Art. 6 and 29(e) of the newly adopted Equality and Discrimination Act (No. 51 of 2017) (likestillings- og diskrimineringsloven).

Portugal - 2014    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Communication of the reasons for dismissal is always required.
    - For disciplinary dismissals:
    Disciplinary dismissals are always preceded by a formal disciplinary process. The employer is first required to provide the employee, with copy to the works council, a written statement detailing the reasons for dismissal based on specific facts (statement of guilt - "nota de culpa") and the employee must be given an opportunity to respond to the allegations. (art. 353 LC) Once the disciplinary process is concluded, the employer must notify in writing his/her final decision to dismissal which shall set out the reasons for the dismissal. (art. 357, 4), 5) LC).

    - Dismissal for unsuitability:
    The dismissal decision which is communicated to the worker, with a copy to the works council must indicate the reasons justifying the dismissal (art. 376(1) a) LC).

    - Dismissal based on the extinction of the position (individual redundancy):
    The dismissal decision which is communicated to the worker, with a copy to the works council must indicate the reasons justifying the dismissal (art. 369 (1) a) LC).

    For collective dismissals, the reasons for the dismissal shall be first given to the worker's representatives through the information and consultation procedures (art. with the worker's representatives (art. 360 LC). The final decision is communicated to each employee and must clearly state the reasons for the dismissal (art. 363 LC)


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's capacity; economic reasons; worker's conduct
NOTE: This information has changed since the previous period covered.
Remarks:
  • The right to job security and the prohibition of dismissal without a fair reason is embodied in the Portuguese Constitution. Article 53 of the Constitution provides that:
    "Workers shall be guaranteed job security, and dismissal without fair cause or for political or ideological reasons shall be prohibited."

    The LC allows for termination of employment at the initiative of the employer for subjective reasons attributable to the employee (conduct-based motives constituting a "just cause") or for objective reasons, related to the employee (unsuitability) or not (economic reasons: collective dismissal or elimination of the position).

    1) Disciplinary dismissals (just cause dismissal):

    A just cause is defined as a wrongful conduct of the employee that in light of its seriousness and of its consequences makes it immediately and practically impossible for the employment relationship to continue.
    The LC provides a non-exhaustive list of behaviours or acts that may constitute just cause for a dismissal including wilful disobedience to orders, breach of other employee's rights and guarantees, repeated provocation of conflicts with other employees, causing serious damages to the pecuniary interests of the company, persistent non-compliance with the due diligence obligation in performing the work, making false statements to justify absences, unjustified absence for 5 (consecutive) or ten (non-consecutive) days in a calendar year, failure to comply with the health and safety rules, unusual reduction of productivity...(art. 351 LC)

    2) Dismissal for unsuitability:

    It is possible to dismiss an employee on the ground of unsuitability for the position.

    A) Unsuitability occurs in the following situations:
    - continued reduction in the employee's productivity or quality of work;
    - repeated damages to the equipment allocated to the job;
    - risks for the employee's own health and safety or to that of third parties.

    In addition, the following requirements must be fulfilled:
    a) there has been changes in the workplace resulting from the introduction of new technologies or equipment in the six months preceding the beginning of the dismissal procedure.
    b)the worker must have been given adequate training to adjust to the changes introduced and,
    c) the worker must have been given an adaptation period of at least 30 days whenever the position involves health and safety risks and,
    d)there is no other position available in the enterprise compatible with the "professional category of the worker" (as from 2104: the original wording referred to the "worker's qualification" (see below).

    NEW in 2014 : Under Law 23/2012 requirement under letter d) was eliminated. The judgment of the Constitutional Court no. 602/13 of 23 September 2013, declared elimination of the requirement under letter d) unconstitutional. As a consequence, Law 27/2014 of 8 May 2014 reintroduced the requirement under letter d) (amended as explained above).


    B) In addition, unsuitability occurs in the context of complex, technical or managerial positions when the employee fails to reach the objectives previously agreed and it is practically impossible for the employment relationship to continue. In such case, changes to worker's positions resulting from the introduction of new technologies or equipment or modifications in the manufacturing or marketing process are also required. It is also compulsory that the situation of unsuitability is not caused by the lack of safety and health conditions at work attributable to the employer (art. 374(2) and 375(1) LC).

    3) Economic dismissals:

    The LC also allows dismissals for economic reasons. Depending on the number of employees concerned, a distinction is made between collective dismissals and dismissals based on the elimination of the position. Both types of dismissal are allowed on the grounds of the closure of one or more departments, or the need to reduce the workforce for structural, technological or economic reasons (art. 359(1) LC).

    NEW in 2014 :
    Under the original version of the LC, art 368 (2) provided for a list of criteria to be followed to select the employee to be made redundant when more employees with the same post where present in the section; these were: 1) shorter length of service in the same post; 2) shorter length of service in the occupational category; 3) lower rank class of the occupational category, 4) shorter length of service in the enterprise. Law 23/2012 eliminated this list so that criteria could be set out by the employer provided that they were relevant and non-discriminatory. The judgment of the Constitutional Court no. 602/13 of 23 September 2013, declared elimination of list unconstitutional. As a consequence, Law 27/2014 of 8 May 2014 introduced an amended list of criteria: 1) lower level of performance, pursuant to criteria pre-disclosed to the employee; 2) lower academic and professional qualifications;3) Higher cost of keeping the employment relationship in place; lower work experience in the post; lower length of service.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; sex; sexual orientation; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; language; parental leave; birth; genetic information; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • There is a general principle of non-discrimination in the LC. According to this principle, any employer is prohibited from discriminating any employee or applicant, directly or indirectly, on the basis of extraction, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, family condition, economic situation, education, social condition or origin, genetic information, reduced capacity for work, disability, chronic illness, nationality, ethnic origin, race, territory of origin, language, religion, political opinion or ideological opinions and trade union affiliation (art. 24 and 25 LC).

    In addition, the LC specifically prohibits dismissals based on political, ideological, ethnic or religious grounds, even when the employer invokes a different reason (art. 381(a) LC).
    Lastly, the dismissal of a pregnant employee, an employee who have recently given birth or is breastfeeding or during parental leave is unlawful if the prior opinion of the competent administrative body is not requested (art. 381 d) LC).


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • - Pregnant women/ women on maternity leave and workers with family responsibilities:
    There is no prohibition of dismissal during pregnancy or maternity leave. However, according to article 63 LC, any dismissal of a pregnant employee, an employee who recently gave birth or is breastfeeding or any employee (male and female) on parental leave requires the prior favourable opinion of the competent authority (Commission for Equality in Labour and Employment (CITE)).
    Any disciplinary dismissal of those employees is always presumed to have been done without a just cause.
    The CITE shall issue its opinion within 30 days.
    If the opinion is unfavourable, the employer cannot dismiss the employee without having obtained a court decision recognizing the existence of a justified reason. In such cases, the burden of the proof lies on the employer. If a dismissal is declared unlawful by the courts the employer cannot oppose the reinstatement of the employee. As an alternative to reinstatement the employee is entitled to compensation.
    (Note also that under Article 381 of the Labour Code, failure by the employer to ask for a prior formal opinion from this authority is in itself a ground of unlawfulness.)

    - Workers' representatives:
    The LC prohibits the dismissal of workers' representatives on the grounds of their participation in collective representation structure or trade-union affiliation or non-affiliation (art. 406) and provides them with special protection in case of disciplinary action or dismissal (art. 410). In particular, the dismissal of a candidate for a trade union body or the Works Council or employees who are, or have been, members of such bodies within the last three years is always presumed to have been done without a just cause (art. 420-3 LC).
    If the employer cannot prove that the disciplinary of dismissal was justified by a just cause, the workers' representative has the right to choose between reinstatement or compensation higher than the standard one (art. 410-6). The court proceedings for challenging such dismissals are of an urgent nature (art. 410-5).


Romania - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • - Dismissal related to the employee's (subjective reasons):
    the decision shall be issued in writing and shall specify the grounds for dismissal (art. 62 LC).
    - Dismissal not related to the employees' person (objective reasons): obligation to indicate the reason leading to the dismissal in the dismissal decision: art. 72 LC (former art. 74).


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's capacity; economic reasons; worker's conduct
Remarks:
  • - Under the LC, a dismissal may be ordered for reasons related to the person of the employee or for reasons not related to the employee (art. 58(2) LC).
    - Art. 61 LC provides for an exhaustive list of valid reasons which related to the person of the employee (subjective reasons). These are: serious or repeated disciplinary offences, preventive custody for more than 30 days, established physical or mental incapacity, professional inadequacy, meeting of retirement conditions and not applying for it .
    - Art. 65 LC allows terminations of an individual employment contract caused by the suppression of the employee's positions, for one or several reasons not connected to employee's person as long as the elimination of the employee's position is effective and has a real and serious cause.
    Such dismissals are either individual or collective.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; performing military or civil service; parental leave; participation in a lawful strike; genetic information; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • - Art. 59 LC prohibits dismissal on the following grounds:
    a) criteria such as gender, sexual orientation, genetic characteristics, age, national origin, race, colour of the skin, ethnic origin, religion, political option, social origin, disability, family status or responsibility, trade union membership or activity;
    b) the exercise, under the terms of the law, of their right to strike and trade union rights.

    In addition, art. 60 LC prohibits the employer from dismissing an employee in the following cases:
    - for the duration of a temporary disability (i.e illness), as certified by a medical certificate;
    - for the duration of the quarantine leave;
    - during the pregnancy of an employee, insofar as the employer took knowledge of it prior to issuing the dismissal decision;
    - during the maternity leave;
    - during the parental leave for children under two years of age or, in the case of a disabled child, up to the age of three years;
    - during the parental leave for children under seven years of age or in the case of a disabled child, for intercurrent diseases, up to the age of eighteen years;
    - during the compulsory military service;
    - during the exercise of an elective office in a trade union, except for the case where the dismissal is decided for serious or repeated disciplinary offences of that employee;
    - during the annual leave.
    This prohibition does not apply in the case of dismissal due to reasons related to the legal reorganization or bankruptcy of the employer.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; workers on temporary leave following an occupational disease or a work injury
Remarks:
  • Art. 60 LC, as amended March 2011 prohibits the employer from dismissing an employee in the following cases:
    - for the duration of a temporary disability (i.e illness), as certified by a medical certificate;
    - during the suspension of work activity following the lay of quarantine (as modified by Act No. 40/2111);
    - during the pregnancy of an employee, insofar as the employer took knowledge of it prior to issuing the dismissal decision;
    - during the maternity leave;
    - during the parental leave for children under two years of age or, in the case of a disabled child, up to the age of three years;
    - during the parental leave for children under seven years of age or in the case of a disabled child, for intercurrent diseases, up to the age of eighteen years;
    - during the exercise of an elective office in a trade union, except for the case where the dismissal is decided for serious or repeated disciplinary offences of that employee;
    - during the annual leave.
    [Act No. 40/2011 removed from art. 60(1) LC the prohibition of dismissal during the compulsory military service]
    These prohibitions do not apply in case of redundancies for reasons that result from the employer's re-organisation, bankruptcy or winding up according to law. (art. 60(2) LC, as amended by Act No. 40/2011)
    The prohibition of dismissal concerning employee's representatives is further specified in arts. 220(2) and 226 LC. According to these provisions, the representatives elected in the trade union management bodies may not be dismissed during their term of office and two years after its end, for reasons not related to the person of the employee, for professional unfitness or reasons related to the fulfilment of the mandate received from the employees in the organization (art. 226) LC)
    The same prohibition applies to the employees' representatives during their entire mandate period (art. 226 LC)


Russian Federation - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Article 81 of the Labour Code


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): economic reasons; worker's conduct; worker's capacity
Remarks:
  • Article 81 of the Labour Code


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; race; colour; sex; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; financial status; language; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Article 3 of the Labour Code prohibits discrimination at work on several grounds.
    Article 261 of the Labour Code prohibits to dismiss a pregnant worker and provides some protection against dismissals to women workers with children.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; minors
Remarks:
  • Article 261 of the Labour Code prohibits to dismiss a pregnant worker except in the event of enterprise liquidation. It also prohibits the dismissal of women with children under three years old, single mother raising a child under fourteen years old (disabled child under eighteen), workers raising those children without a mother except on certain limited grounds ( liquidation and grounds related to the misconduct of the worker).

    Except in the event of enterprise liquidation, workers under 18 can only be dismissed with the authorization of the Labour Inspectorate and the Commission for the rights of minors (art. 269 of the Labour Code).

    Articles 374-376 LC elaborate on the procedure on how to dismiss elected workers’ representatives and provide additional guarantees to them.



Serbia - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 180 LL.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 179 refers to "a just cause relating to his/her working ability, behavior and employer's need" and provides an exhaustive list of 9 instances when termination of employment by the employer is authorized.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; financial status; performing military or civil service; language; parental leave; state of health
Remarks:
  • Art. 18 LL: general provision on non discrimination.
    Art. 183 LL: list of prohibited grounds for dismissal.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • * Workers' representatives: art. 188 LL: no dismissal during the term of office.
    * No dismissal during pregnancy, maternity leave, absence for childcare or special care of the child: art. 187 LL.


Slovakia - 2012    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 61(2) LC: "An employer may only give notice to an employee for reasons expressly stipulated in this Act. The reason for giving notice must be defined in the notice in terms of fact such that it may not be confused with a different reason, or the notice shall otherwise be deemed invalid. The reason for giving notice may not be subsequently amended".


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
NOTE: This information has changed since the previous period covered.
Remarks:
  • In Slovakia, the LC exhaustively sets out the grounds for dismissal with notice; no other ground may be added (sec. 63 LC).
    Those grounds can be divided into 1) economic reasons, 2) reasons related to the individual worker (disciplinary reasons, physical incapacity, poor performance...)

    Sec. 63(1) LC, as amended by Act No. 257/2011 reads as follows:
    An employer may give notice to an employee only for the following reasons:
    a) if the employer or part thereof ceases its operations or is relocated;
    b) if an employee becomes redundant by virtue of a written decision of the employer or a competent body on changes in duties, technical equipment, reduction in the number of employees with the aim of securing [new in Sept. 2011: previously "increasing"] work efficiency, or on other organizational changes;
    c) a medical opinion states that the employee's health condition has caused a long term loss of his/her ability to perform his/her previous work or if he/she can no longer perform such work due to an occupational disease or danger of such disease, or if the maximum permitted level of exposure has been reached at in the workplace, as determined by a decision of a competent public health body;
    d) The employee
    1. fails to meet the requirements set out by legal regulations for the performance of the agreed work,
    2. ceases to fulfil the requirements pursuant to § 42 paragraph (2),
    3. fails to fulfil the requirements for the proper performance of the agreed work determined by the employer in internal regulations, through no fault of the employer, or
    4. does not satisfactorily fulfill the working tasks, and the employer has in the preceding two months [new in Sept. 2011: previously "six months"], requested him in writing to rectify the poor performance, but the employee failed to do so within a reasonable period of time,
    e) there are reasons on the part of the employee for which the employer might immediately terminate the employment relationship with him/her, or by virtue of less grave breaches of labour discipline; for less severe breaches of labour discipline; employment may be terminated with notice if, with respect to breach of labour discipline, only if the employee has been notified in writing in the preceding six months of the possibility to be dismissed.

    The LC also provides that, the employer (except in certain cases) can only carry out a dismissal when:
    a) the employer does not have the possibility to further employ the employee, not even for a reduced working time, in the place which was agreed as the place of work performance,
    b) the employee is not willing to shift to other suitable work offered to him/her by the employer at the place of work or undertake the necessary training for this other work (sec. 63(2) LC).
    This does not apply to dismissals with notice based on unsatisfactory performance of work, "less serious breach of labour discipline" and to summary dismissal.
    [New as of Sept. 2011 introduction of the possibility to regulate or exclude by way of collective agreement the above mentioned employer' obligations contained in sec. 63(2) LC (sec. 63(3) LC)]

    Reasons justifying immediate termination are final conviction of an willful criminal offence and gross violation of labour discipline (see sec. 68 LC)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; language; property; state of health; fulfilling state duties; genetic information; ethnic origin
NOTE: This information has changed since the previous period covered.
Remarks:
  • On the general prohibition of discrimination, see sec. 13 LC which refers to the principle of Equal Treatment contained in the Act No. 365/2004 Coll. of 20 May 2004 (Amended in 2007 and 2008) on Equal Treatment in Certain Areas and Protection against Discrimination. This Act prohibits discrimination in employment relations (including dismissal) on grounds of sex (which includes pregnancy, motherhood, sex or gender identification), religion or belief, race, nationality or ethnic origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital or family status, colour, language, political affiliation or other conviction, national or social origin, property, lineage or any other status. (See sec. 6 read together with sec. 2 and 2 a) of the Act).
    Note, that until April 2011, that the list of prohibited grounds contained in the Labour Code (sec. 13(2)) was much more restrictive than that of the Act 365/2004. New as of 1 April 2011: An amendment to the Labour Code, Act. No 48/2011 of 8 february 2011, effective as of 1 April 2011 brought the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination of the Labour Code in line with the Anti-Discrimination Act while adding additional grounds in the LC. As a result, sec. 13(2) LC now expressly prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, disability and ethnic origin. Two new grounds, which were not included in the Anti Discrimination Act have also been introduced in the LC (sec. 13(2) and art. 1 of the Fundamental Principles, namely: Unfavourable state of health and genetic features".

    "Filing a complaint against the employer is included in sec. 13(3) LC which stipulates that "in the workplace, nobody may be persecuted or otherwise sanctioned in the performance of labour-law relations for submitting a complaint (...) against another employee or the employer."

    In addition, sec. 64 LC expressly prohibits the employer to give notice to employees - subject to certain exceptions - during a "protection period", namely:
    - at a time when the employee is declared temporarily incapable for work due to disease or accident, unless deliberately induced or caused under the influence of alcohol, narcotic substances or psychotropic, and within the period from submission of a proposal for institutional care or from entry into spa treatment up to the day of termination thereof,
    - in case of conscription of the employee to perform extraordinary service in time of crisis, or in case of performance of alternative service,
    - during the entire period of pregnancy, maternity leave, parental leave or in case a single-parent (male and female) takes care of a child under the age of three,
    - during the leave granted for the performance of a public office,
    - at a time an employee is on the basis of a medical opinion, certified as temporarily unfit for night work.
    However, this prohibition of notice does not apply to cases of termination:
    * for reasons justifying immediate termination unless concerning employee on maternity leave or on parental leave,
    * for other breaches of labour discipline unless concerning a pregnant employee, an employee on maternity leave or on parental leave (male and female),
    * in the event of cessation of activities or relocation of the employer's business,
    * if the employee has lost by his/her own fault the preconditions for the performance of the agreed work pursuant to a special law.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; confirmed injured workers; workers with disabilities; workers performing military/alternative service; workers on temporary leave following an occupational disease or a work injury; workers holding an elected position or discharging a public function
NOTE: This information has changed since the previous period covered.
Remarks:
  • Some categories of workers enjoy special protection which takes either the form of 1) a prohibition of notice during "a protection period" or 2) additional procedural requirements (i.e prior approval of a competent authority).

    1) Sec. 64 LC expressly prohibits the employer to give notice to employees - subject to certain exceptions - during a "protection period", namely:
    - at a time when the employee is declared temporarily incapable of performing work due to disease or accident, unless deliberately induced or caused under the influence of alcohol, narcotic substances or psychotropic,
    - in case of conscription of the employee to perform extraordinary service in time of crisis,
    - during the entire period of pregnancy, maternity leave, parental leave or in case a lone employee (male and female) takes care of a child under the age of three,
    - during the leave granted for the performance of a public office,
    - at a time an employee is declared temporarily incapable of performing night work.
    However, this prohibition of notice does not apply to cases of termination:
    * for reasons justifying immediate termination unless concerning employee on maternity leave or on parental leave,
    * for other breaches of labour discipline unless concerning a pregnant employee, an employee on maternity leave or on parental leave (male and female),
    * in the event of cessation of activities or relocation of the employer's business.

    New in Sept. 2011: The LC, as modified by Act No. 257/2011 now grants a special against termination during the probationary period to pregnant women, mothers of children below nine months and breastfeeding women. While as a rule, termination of employment during the probationary period can take place for any reason and without justification, employment of the above mentioned workers may be terminated only in exceptional cases not relating to pregnancy or maternal function, and the reasons for termination must be stated in writing (sec. 72(1) LC as amended).

    2) Specific requirements:
    - Prior authorization:
    * Employee's representatives:
    According to See also sec. 240(7) LC, as amended by Act 257/2011 Employees' representatives which include trade union members, members of a works council or a works trustee, during their term in office and for six months after its termination [reduced by Act 257/2011 - previously 1 year], shall be protected against measures which could damage them, including the termination of the employment relationship and which could be motivated by their position or activity. Sec. 240 (8) LC specifies that any summary dismissal or dismissal with notice of a member of the relevant trade union body, a member of a works council or a works trustee requires the prior consent of these employees' representatives.
    *Disabled workers:
    Sec. 66 LC: "An employer may dismiss an employee with health disability only with he prior consent of the relevant office of labour, social affairs and family otherwise notice shall be invalid. No such consent is required where the employee has reached the age entitling him/her to old-age pension or was dismissed on the grounds of cessation of activities or relocation or for grave breaches of labour discipline.
    - Severance pay [See below under severance pay - the rules have been substantially modified by Act 257/2011]:
    There is no general right to severance pay except for redundancies. However, the LC foresees specific severance payment in the following situation:
    * Termination with notice following a prohibition to carry out the work as a result of "employment injury, occupational disease or the risk of such an disease, or he/she has already received the maximum permitted level of exposure in the work place as determined by a decision of a competent public health body. The employee is entitled to severance pay (unless the occupational injury or disease was caused by his/her fault) amounting to at least 10 months' pay (sec. 76(3) LC, as amended by Act 257/2011.).
    * With regard to termination with notice due to "long term loss of ability to perform the work" for health reasons, the rules have changed in 2011: under the previous LC, employees were entitled to 2 month's pay or 3 months' pay if they had at least 5 years of service. According to sec. 76(1) LC, as amended by Act 257/2011, when the employment is termination because the employee is no longer able to perform the work, given his/her health status severance payment now amounts to the employee's average monthly earnings multiplied by the number of months of the notice period. Severance pay now functions as a pay in lieu of notice, as it is not any more payable when the employee works through the entire statutory notice period. The employer is required to pay the employee a severance payment only in the event that the employment terminates by agreement. If the employee works partially through the termination period, he/she will be entitled to some severance payment for the time he/she has not worked.


Slovenia - 2012    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 86 (2) ERA: the notice of termination shall state the reason for termination and explain it in writing.
    Art. 88 (2) ERA: Reasons behind ordinary termination must be serious and substantiated.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 88 (1) ERA : list of reasons for ordinary termination.

    NB: The ERA distinguishes between "ordinary" and "extra-ordinary" termination.
    Ordinary termination shall be justified by one of the listed reasons related to the worker's conduct, capacity and economic reasons.
    Extra-ordination termination is in allowed in exceptional cases of severe violations of the employee's obligations exhaustively listed in art. 110 ERA (i.e criminal offence, gross negligence, absence due to imprisonment). No notice period is required in such cases. Specific rules relating to extra-ordinary dismissals are contained in art. 110-11 ERA and will not be further developed here.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; financial status; parental leave; participation in a lawful strike; state of health; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Art. 89 ERA lists unfounded reasons for termination.
    See also art. 81 ERA together with art. 6 ERA that list prohibited grounds for discrimination.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; confirmed injured workers; older workers/workers on the verge of retirement; workers with disabilities; workers on temporary leave following an occupational disease or a work injury
Remarks:
  • * Worker's representatives and trade union representatives: No dismissal without the prior consent of the body whose member they are (art. 113 ERA).
    * Older workers (over 55 years old): No dismissal for economic reasons without the consent of the worker until he fulfills the minimum conditions for acquiring the right to an old-age pension (art. 114 ERA). The 2007 amendment foresees the possibility for the employer to offer a new adequate employment in line with art. 88 of the ERA.

    * Workers with family responsibilities and pregnant women:
    Prohibition of dismissal during pregnancy, period of breastfeeding and parental leave (art. 115 ERA).

    * Workers with disabilities and workers absent due to illness or injury: art. 116 (1) and (2) ERA)


Spain - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 53(1)a): written notification of dismissal stating the reasons.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): economic reasons; worker's conduct; worker's capacity
Remarks:
  • Upon expiry of the trial period, dismissal (including of a fixed term employee) shall always be justified under Spanish law. The valid grounds for termination are divided between objective causes [= worker's capacity, economic reasons] and disciplinary causes [worker's conduct]:

    1) Objective causes (art. 52 ET):
    * the incompetence of the employee, known to the employer or later demonstrated by the employee after joining the enterprise;
    * the worker's failure to adapt to the technical modification of his or her job, if such changes is reasonable and has occurred after a minimum of two months from the introduction of the modification;
    * economic, technical, organisational or production reasons justifying collective and non-collective dismissals.

    As a result of the Act 35/2010 (and previously the RDL 10/2010), the law now contains a definitions of what constitute economic, technical, organisational or production reasons: these definitions have later been amended by Royal Decree Law 3/2012 (see art. 51.1 ET on collective dismissals).
    ]
    * persistent absenteeism (= absence from work, even justified but intermittent, amounting to 20% of the working days in two consecutive months, or 25% in four discontinuous months within a period of 12 months, if the rate of absenteeism of the total workforce exceeds 5% during the same periods.

    Note: This 5% threshold has been set out by Law 3/2012. Royal Decree Law 10/2010 had decreased this threshold to 2.5 from the 5% level that existed prior to 2010.

    However, the following will not be considered as absenteeism: legal strikes, employees' representative activities, labour accidents, maternity leave, vacations, temporary absence from work of more than 20 consecutive days due to sickness or non-employment-related accidents, and/or physical or psychological situation due to gender violence; and
    * lack of funding for public programs carried out public authorities or non-profit entities.

    2) Disciplinary causes (art. 54 ET):
    * repeated and unjustified absence or lateness in the workplace;
    * insubordinate conduct or disobedience at work;
    * verbal or physical abuse directed at the employer or the persons employed in the enterprise or the family living with them;
    * breach of contractual good faith and abuse of trust in discharge of duties;
    * continuous default on the amount of work carried out
    * habitual drunkenness or drug addiction if it adversely affects work; and
    * harassment based on race or ethnic origin, religious beliefs or conviction, disability, age or sexual orientation or sexual harassment against the employer or other persons working at the company.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; adoption leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • 1) The anti-discrimination provisions of the Workers' Charter prohibit termination of employment on the basis of sex, ethnic origin, marital status, race, social status, age (within the limits established by the law), religious or political beliefs, membership or non-membership of a trade union, sexual orientation, language, disability (art. 4(2)c) ET).
    Any employer's unilateral decision based on the above-mentioned grounds is considered to be null and void (17(1) ET).
    In addition, according to art. 55(5) ET any disciplinary dismissal based on discriminatory grounds prohibited by the law or the constitution or in violation of the employee's fundamental rights or public freedom is null and void.
    2) In addition, dismissal is null in the following circumstances: pregnancy, suspension of contract due to maternity, risk during pregnancy, or breast-feeding leave; adoption or fostering; family leave to care for children or handicapped persons; and certain circumstances in which female workers have been victims of gender violence. This is however not an absolute prohibition, since dismissal in those cases is allowed if not motivated by reason of pregnancy or the exercise of the right to the above mentioned leaves (art. 53(4) ET - dismissal for an objective cause - and art. 55(5) ET - disciplinary dismissal).


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives
Remarks:
  • 1) Workers' and trade union representatives:
    - According to art. 55(1) ET if the worker is a workers' legal representative or a trade union representative, there will be formal adversarial procedures during which the worker and other members of the union to which he or she belongs, may be heard. If the worker is a member of a trade union and the employer is aware of this fact, representatives of the corresponding trade union must be heard in advance.
    - In addition, in the event of unfair dismissal of a workers' representative, it is up to that employee to decide whether he or she wants to be reinstated or receive compensation, as opposed to the general rule according to which the choice is made by the employer (art. 56(4) ET).
    - Lastly, in the event of collective dismissal, the workers' representatives have priority for remaining in the enterprise (art. 51(5) ET).

    2) Royal Decree-Law 3/2012 has introduced the possibility to establish other priority rules through collective agreements, in order to protect people with family responsibilities, people with disabilities or people above certain age in case of collective dismissal (art. 51(5) ET).


Switzerland - 2013    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • The Swiss CO distinguishes between two categories of individual dismissals:
    1) Ordinary dismissal ("congé") by one of the party with a notice period:
    Written justification must be provided upon request by the other party (art. 335 CO).

    2) Termination by one one the party with immediate effect:
    Written justification must be provided upon request of the other party (art. 337 (1) CO).


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none
Remarks:
  • The employment contract can be terminated by either party provided that notice period requirements are complied with.
    No list of valid grounds is provided. However, this does not result in a total freedom to terminate the contract: it must be understood in light of the existence of prohibited grounds. In addition, the CO states that dismissal ("congé") should not constitute an abuse of right (art. 336 CO).

    For Termination with immediate effect (no notice) fair reasons are requested. (art. 337 (1) CO)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; family responsibilities; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; performing military or civil service; exercise of a right; solely frustrate the formation of claims arising out of the employment relationship; state of health; conviction or failure to disclose a conviction
Remarks:
  • Amongst those prohibited grounds, only "trade union activities", "performing Swiss military service or civil service", "exercise of a constitutional right" and "solely frustrate the formation of claims of the other party arising out of the employment relationship" are specifically mentioned in the CO in art. 336 (2) and 336 (1) e) CO on unfair dismissal.

    However, art. 336 (1) a) CO refers to "quality inherent to the personality of the other party, unless such quality relates to the employment relationship or significantly impairs cooperation within the enterprise".
    This should be read in the light of art. 8 of the Swiss Constitution that specifically establishes a general prohibition based in particular on grounds of origin, race, gender, age, language, way of life, religious, ideological, or political convictions or because of a physical, mental or psychological disability.

    See art. 336c (1) b) for temporary (work) injury or illness. Only additional safeguards (timeframe) during which dismissal is not possible are provided. This ground could constitute a cause for dismissal if it impairs cooperation within the enterprise.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with a long period of service
Remarks:
  • *No dismissal of pregnant women and women on maternity leave: art. 336c (1) c) CO
    * Workers with an important length of tenure: higher protection with respect to severance allowance: art. 339c CO.
    * Workers' representatives: constitutes an abusive termination the dismissal of an employee during the exercise of a mandate as employees' representative unless the employer demonstrates a justified motive for dismissal: art. 336 (2) b) CO.


Tajikistan - 2015    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 46 of the LC states that the termination must be justified by the employer.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's capacity; worker's conduct; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Article 46. lists the following valid reasons for the termination of employment of a contract of an indefinite duration:

    1) liquidation of the organization; termination of the activities of the employer; downsizing or staff;
    2) a mismatch of the employee position or work because of poor training, or health status, which are preventing the continuation of this work;
    3) systematic failure of a culpable employee without good reason in the performance of job duties assigned to him/her by the labour agreement or by the internal labour regulations, if an employee previously employed disciplinary action;
    4) absenteeism (including the absence of more than three hours during the day) without a good reason;
    5) absence from work for more than four consecutive months due to temporary disability, not including maternity leave, unless the law is set longer-term preservation of jobs (positions) with a certain disease. For employees unable to work due to injury or occupational disease, work place (position) is maintained until rehabilitation or establishment of invalidity;
    6) coming to work drunk, of under drugs or toxic substances;
    7) committing theft in the workplace
    8) termination of employment contract (contract) with the part-taking in connection with another employee who is not a part-time, and because of restrictions on moonlighting;
    9) termination of employment contract (contract) with the head of the organization in connection with the change of ownership;
    10) single gross violation of labour law by heads the organization (separate its divisions) and their deputies;
    11) guilty of committing an employee, directly serving the financial and commodity values, actions, giving rise to loss of confidence in him by the employer;
    12) Commission employees who perform educational functions and who commuted an immoral act that is incompatible with the continuation of this work;
    13) violation of statutory procedures and rules for employment.
    Laws, statutes and regulations on discipline may also provide other additional grounds for termination of employment (contract) by the employer.
    Termination of the employment agreement (contract) on the grounds referred to in paragraph 1 (except when liquidation), in paragraph 2, paragraph 2 of Article 53 of the Labour Code will be permitted if the employer can not transfer the employee with his or her consent to another job.
    The termination of employment is not allowed during the period of temporary disability (other than dismissal under paragraph 5 of this article) and the period when the employee is on leave, except in cases of the liquidation of the organization, or the termination of the activities of the employer.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; race; colour; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; age; place of residence; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Prohibited grounds are:ethnic origin, race, colour, sex, age, religion, political opinion, place of birth, national extraction or social origin, pregnant women and women with children under the age of three years, single mothers if they have a disabled child under sixteen years.

    Art. 7 LC - provision on non discrimination.
    Art.172 LC


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave
Remarks:
  • Art. 172 LC provides for a protection of the termination of employment for pregnant women and women with children under the age of three years, single mothers if they have a disabled child under sixteen years, except for cases of complete liquidation of the organization, when the termination of the employment contract (contract) is permitted ,however they should be assisted by the government agencies with finding a suitable work and employment.


Turkey - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 19 LA.
    This requirement only applies if the following criteria are fulfilled:
    - the employee is engaged for an indefinite period, and
    - the employee has worked for at least 6 months, and
    - the employee works in an establishment with at least 30 employees.
    In addition, are also excluded from this requirement: the employer's representatives and his assistants authorized to manage the entire enterprise as well as the employer's representatives managing the entire establishment who are also authorized to recruit and terminate employees.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • * Art 18 LA (termination with a valid reason/ job security provision): There must be a valid reason for dismissal connected with the capacity or conduct of the employee or based on the operational requirements of the undertaking.

    This requirement only applies if the 3 following criteria are fulfilled:
    - the employee is engaged for an indefinite period, and
    - the employee has worked for at least 6 months, and
    - the employee works in an establishment with at least 30 employees.

    In addition, are also excluded from this protection: the employer's representatives and his assistants authorized to managed the entire enterprise as well as the employer' representatives managing the entire establishment who are also authorized to recruit and terminate employees.

    In case of such dismissal with just cause, the notice requirements shall be complied with.

    * Therefore, employers can dismiss employees falling outside the scope of application of article 18 LA (job security provision) without having to present a valid reason provided that the notice requirements are observed in accordance with art. 17 LA.
    However, the employer is not entirely free in dismissing those employees since in the event of abusive termination of his or her right to terminate, he or she shall be liable to pay compensation amounting to 3 times the wages for period of notice (= max. 24 weeks).

    * In addition, the LA allows the employer or the employee to immediately terminate an employment contract for a just cause whether for a defi­nite or indefinite period, before its expiry or without the prescribed notice periods. This is referred to in the law as the "the breaking of the employment contract".
    The law provides a list of reasons for breaking the contract for a just cause which are divided in three groups for the employee and four groups for the employer (Art. 24 and 25 LA), namely, reasons of health; immoral or dishonourable conduct or other similar behaviour and force majeure. There is also a fourth group for the employer which is the employee being under arrest or under custody.
    The employer is entitled to break the employment contract, whether for a defi­nite or indefinite period, before its expiry or without the prescribed notice periods in the above cases.


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; religion; political opinion; trade union membership and activities; language; birth
Remarks:
  • *According to Art. 18 LA (job security provision) the following, inter alia, shall not constitute a valid reason for termination:
    a) union membership or participation in union activities outside working hours or, with the consent of the employer, within working hours;
    b) acting or having acted in the capacity of, or seeking office as, a union representative;
    c) the filing of a complaint or participation in proceedings against an employer involving alleged violations of laws or regulations or recourse to competent administrative or judicial authorities;
    d) race, colour, sex, marital status, family responsibilities, pregnancy, birth, religion, political opinion and similar reasons;
    e) absence from work during maternity leave when female workers must not be engaged in work, as foreseen in Article 74;
    f) temporary absence from work during the waiting period due to illness or accident foreseen in Article 25 of the Labor Act, subsection I (b).

    This provision only applies if the 3 following criteria are fulfilled:
    - the employee is engaged for an indefinite period, and
    - the employee has worked for at least 6 months, and
    - the employee works in an establishment with at least 30 employees.

    * The general provision on non discrimination (art. 5 LA) covers all the employees in the scope of the EA and prohibits discrimination in employment (including termination) based on language, race, sex, political opinion, philosophical belief, religion and sex or similar reasons. Unless there are essential reasons for different treatment, the employer must not discriminate between a full-time and a part-time employee or an employee working under a contract concluded for a definite period and one working under a contract concluded for an indefinite period. In addition, except for biological reasons or reasons related to the nature of the job, the employer must not make any discrimination, either directly or indirectly, against an employee in the conclusion, conditions, execution and termination of his employment contract due to the employee's sex or maternity.

    * See also Art. 25 of Law No. 6356 on Trade Unions and Collective Labour Agreements (2012) concerning the prohibition of dismissals and of discrimination on the basis of trade union membership and activities.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives
Remarks:
  • * Art. 24 of the 2012 Act No. 6356 on Trade Unions and Collective agreements:
    “ (1) An employer shall not terminate the employment contract of shop stewards unless there is a just cause for termination and he indicates this clearly and precisely. The shop steward or the trade union of which he is a member shall have the right to apply to the competent court within one month of the date when the notice of termination is communicated to him (...).
    (3) If the court decides that the trade union representative is to be reinstated in his employment, the termination shall be annulled and the employer shall pay his full wages and all other benefits between the termination and final decision date. On the condition that the trade union representative applies within six working days following the final decision of reinstatement, and in the event that he is not reinstated within six working days, his wage and other benefits shall continue to be paid by taking into account that his employment relation is still continuing. This provision shall likewise apply in the case of a new appointment as shop steward.
    (4) Unless there is a written consent of the shop steward, the employer shall not change the workplace of the shop steward or shall not make a drastic change in his work. Otherwise, the change shall be considered as void."

    * Prohibition to dismiss a women on the grounds of pregnancy or maternity leave (Art. 18 LA) and general prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of maternity (Art. 5 LA).


Turkmenistan - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Art. 40 and art. 44 LC


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • Art. 42 LC provides that the reasons for dismissal can be the following:
    - 1) liquidation of the enterprise or termination of activities by an individual employer;
    - 2) a reduction in the number or staff of workers, including in connection with changes in production technology, organization of labor, reduction in the volume of work;
    - 3) the employee’s inconsistencies with the position held or the work performed due to insufficient qualifications, including those confirmed by the certification results;
    - 4) change of the owner of the enterprise (in relation to the head of the enterprise, his deputies and the chief accountant) in accordance with the first part of Article 37 of this Code;
    - 5) absence from work for more than four months in a row due to temporary disability, not counting the period of maternity leave, unless the legislation of Turkmenistan establishes a longer term for maintaining a place of work (position) for a specific disease. For employees who have lost their ability to work due to labor injury or occupational disease, the place of work (position) is maintained until the restoration of working capacity or the establishment of disability;
    - 6) systematic non-performance by an employee without valid excuses of employment duties assigned to him by the employment contract or the internal labor regulations of the enterprise, if the employee has previously been subject to disciplinary measures;
    - 7) absenteeism, including absence from work without good reason for more than three hours during the working day;
    - 8) appearance at work in a state of alcoholic, narcotic or other toxic intoxication;
    - 9) the disclosure of secrets protected by the legislation of Turkmenistan (state, commercial, official and other), which became known to the employee in connection with the performance of his job duties;
    - 10) commission at the place of work of embezzlement of property, embezzlement, its deliberate destruction or damage established by a valid court verdict or decision of the body whose competence includes the imposition of an administrative penalty;
    - 11) violation by an employee of labor protection requirements, if this violation entailed grave consequences (work accident, accident, catastrophe) or deliberately created a real threat of such consequences;
    - 12) in case of revealing the fact of submission by the employee to the employer of forged documents or knowingly false information when concluding an employment contract;
    - 13) stipulated by the employment contract with the head of the enterprise, members of the executive body of the enterprise;
    - 14) in other cases established by this Code.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; race; sex; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; disabilities; language; property; place of residence; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • Art. 7 LC: prohibition of discrimination in employment based on: nationality, race, sex, origin, property or employment status, residence, language, age, religion, political beliefs, party affiliation or lack of affiliation to any party.


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities; minors
Remarks:
  • Art. 241 LC
    Art. 257 LC


United Kingdom - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • Sec. 92 ERA as amended by the Unfair Dismissal and Statement of Reasons for Dismissal (Variation of Qualifying Period) Order 2012): Upon request, an employee is entitled to a written statement of the reasons for dismissal provided than he has been employed for at least two years [New as of 6 April 2012: previously 1 year].
    However employees dismissed during pregnancy, maternity or adoption leave have the right to receive such statement without having to request it and regardless of the length of service.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): any fair reasons
Remarks:
  • There are six potentially fair reasons for dismissal under section 98 of the ERA:
    - the employee's capability or qualifications for performing work of the kind he or she was employed to do;
    - the employee's conduct;
    - the employee's retirement;
    - the employee's redundancy;
    - the employee could not continue to work in the position which he or she held without contravention (either on his or her part or that of the employer) of a statutory duty or restriction;
    - "some other substantial reason" justifying the dismissal of an employee holding the position that he or she held.


Prohibited grounds: pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; race; sex; sexual orientation; religion; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; parental leave; whistle blowing; adoption leave; raising occupational health and security concerns; performing jury service; conviction or failure to disclose a conviction; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • A dismissal is also automatically unfair if the principal reason for it involves:
    * leave for family reasons (includes pregnancy, maternity/paternity/adoption/parental leave): sec. 99 ERA;
    * employee representatives: sec. 103 ERA, trade union membership and activities and refusal to belong to a trade union: sec. 152 (1) of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act (TULRCA);
    * bringing proceedings against the employer to enforce a statutory right: sec. 104 ERA; (see also 104A to 104D ERA: enforcement of a right related to national minimum wage, flexible hours, tax credit and pension enrolment)
    * race, ethnic or national origin: Sec 4 (2) b and 4 (4A) of the Race Relations Act 1976 (c. 74) as subsequently amended;
    * sex: sec. 6 (2) of the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 (c. 65), as subsequently amended;
    * disability: sec. 4 (2) b) of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 8c. 50) as subsequently amended.
    * age: sec. 7 (2) d) of the The Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006 (No. 1031), as amended;
    * religion and belief: sec. 6 (2) d) of the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003 (No. 1660), as amended;
    * sexual orientation: sec. 6 2) d) of the The Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 (No. 1661), as amended;
    * safety representatives raising health and safety concerns: sec. 100, ERA;
    * jury service: sec. 98B ERA;
    * New in 2010: a prohibited blacklist of trade union members in certain circumstances (sec. 104E ERA, as inserted by Regulation 12 of the Employment Relations Act 1999 (Blacklists) Regulations 2010.

    In addition, a dismissal is also automatically unfair if the principal reason for it involves:
    - unfair selection for redundancy (sec. 105 ERA), transfer of an undertaking (sec. 7(1), Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations, 2006), (i.e. unless the dismissal is justified by an economic, technical or organizational reason entailing a change in the workforce), conviction of an offence or failure to disclose such a conviction when the conviction is 'spent' within the meaning of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (sec. 4(3)(b));
    - industrial pressure exercised on the employer (e.g. if employees threaten to start industrial action unless a certain employee is not dismissed) (sec. 107, ERA);
    - shop workers and betting workers who refuse Sunday work (sec. 101, ERA); and
    - trustees of occupational pension schemes (sec. 102, ERA).


Workers enjoying special protection: no protected groups
Remarks:
  • No additional protection for specific category of workers besides the prohibition of dismissals based on the above-mentioned reasons.


Uzbekistan - 2019    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • According to the Art. 100 LC the termination of the employment contract concluded for an indefinite period, as well as the termination of a fixed-term contract before its expiration by the employer must be justified.


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): worker's conduct; worker's capacity; economic reasons
Remarks:
  • An employer is entitled to terminate an employment agreement with an employee only on the grounds provided in Article 100 LC, namely:
    - Changes in technology, organisation of production and work, or a reduction of the scope of work resulting in a change in the number of staff or a change in the nature of the work, or the liquidation of the Company;
    - Inconsistent job performance due to insufficient qualifications or for health reasons;
    - Systematic violation by the employee of his or her labour duties;
    - A single gross violation by the employee of his or her labour duties;
    - Termination of an employment agreement with part time employees when they are replaced with full time employees;
    - Termination of an employment agreement with the management of an enterprise in connection with a change in ownership.


Prohibited grounds: race; sex; religion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; language; property; conviction or failure to disclose a conviction
Remarks:
  • Art. 6 LC: Prohibition of discrimination in employment.
    Art. 25 LC: Additional employment guaranties for members of representative bodies.


Workers enjoying special protection: workers' representatives; pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers on temporary leave following an occupational disease or a work injury
Remarks:
  • Article 25 LC provides additional labor guarantees for workers’ representatives. They are protected from harassment by the employer in connection with their functions and activities. Imposture of disciplinary sanctions against workers’ representatives and the termination of labour relations with them at the initiative of the employer is prohibited without the prior consent of the local labor authorities.

    Art. 100.7 LC prohibits termination of a labor contract at the initiative of the employer during worker’s temporary incapacity to perform work and during leave from work, except cases of complete liquidation of the enterprise.

    Article 237 LC provides guarantees for pregnant women and women with children. Termination of an employment contract with pregnant women and women with children younger than three years old at the initiative of the employer is not allowed, except in cases of complete liquidation of the enterprise.