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Basic Guide to Termination

Basic Guide to Termination

Certain procedures must be followed when either an employer or worker wishes to terminate employment.

Application

The Basic Conditions of Employment Act applies to all employers and workers, but not –

  • members of the –
    • National Defence Force,
    • National Intelligence Agency, or
    • South African Secret Service; or
  • unpaid volunteers working for charity.

The section of the Act that regulates working hours does not apply to:

  • workers in senior management
  • sales staff who travel and regulate their own working hours
  • workers who work less than 24 hours in a month
  • workers who earn in excess of an amount stated in terms of  section 6 (3) of the Act
  • workers engaged in emergency work are excluded from certain provisions.

See (Ref)

Applies to all employers and workers and regulates leave, working hours, employment contracts, deductions, payslips, and termination.

Notice of Termination

Notice must be given in writing, except when it is given by an illiterate worker.

Based on Legislation in Section 37of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Notice Period

Worker employed for…Notice Period
6 months or less1 week
More than 6 months, but less than 1 year2 weeks
1 year or more4 weeks *

* A collective agreement may reduce the 4 week notice period to not less than 2 weeks.

Based on Legislation in Section 37of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Pay Instead of Notice

Employers may decide to waive the notice period, but the worker must still be paid for the notice period.

Based on Legislation in Section 38of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Notice and Accommodation

Workers who live on the premises of the employer may stay in the accommodation for 1 month if the employer ends the contract of employment prematurely.

Based on Legislation in Section 39of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Severance Pay

Retrenched workers (dismissed due to employer’s operational requirements or insolvency) are entitled to 1 week’s pay for every year of service.

Based on Legislation in Section 41of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Certificate of Service

On termination of employment, workers are entitled to a certificate of service.

Based on Legislation in Section 42of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act

Unfair Dismissal

Workers who feel they have been unfairly dismissed should contact the CCMA.

Based on Legislation in Section 37of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act


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Originally appeared on labour.gov.za on 06-08-2012. The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of estome. estome accepts no responsibility for the accuracy, completeness or fairness of the article, nor does the information contained herein constitute advice, legal or otherwise.

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