Grounds for dismissal

The reasons for a termination are divided in the following areas:

Grounds for dismissal: Extraordinary and immediate termination: Ordinary termination with period of notice
Notice of termination for reasons of conduct Special reasons are required With previous warnings
Dismissal on personal grounds With no warnings
Forced redundancies Operational circumstances are required

Notice of termination for reasons of conduct

Notices of termination for reasons of conduct are the result of employee’s misconduct. In the event of a breaching of the rules, the employer is first entitled to warn the employee. After repeated warnings, if the situation does not change, there are enough grounds for a dismissal. [See: Warnings] As “misconduct” is intended:• Suspension from work taken without permission of the employer;• Failure to comply with operational smoking and alcohol bans;• Criticism to employers and superiors;• Unexcused absence;• Unpunctuality;• Calling sick and working elsewhere.

Did you know? An employee, who is proven to behave against the rules, must pay the estimated “detective” costs to him.

Dismissal on personal grounds

Dismissal on personal grounds depends on facts related with the person of the employee. These imply: • Lack of eligibility/qualification of the employee;• Lack of work permit;• Foreign military service of more than two months;• Serving of a custodial sentence;• Sickness/Illness of the employee:- Long-lasting disease- Frequent short-term diseases- Permanent incapacity for work- Performance reduction

Forced redundancies

Forced redundancies terminations are triggered by changes in the company:• In-house circumstances- Rationalization measures- Discontinuation or restriction of production• External conditions- Lack/shortage of orders- Decline in salesIf, despite the circumstances, the employer has the chance to take the employee to another place/area of the company, he may not terminate the contract.When selecting the person to be dismissed, the employer must make a “social selection”(soziale Auswahl in German). The legislator requires that the termination is “socially justified”. Terminations that are contrary to the principle of good faith or are contrary to the law are ineffective. A forced redundancies termination is socially unjustified, if the employer in the selection of the employees to be dismissed: • is a senior (long period of employment),• is older• has maintenance obligations (severe disability or pregnancy).

Reasons for an extraordinary termination

There must be a special reason for an extraordinary termination. Here are some examples.

Reasons of extraordinary termination from the employer: 

  • Unjustified work-refusal
  • Xenophobic comments
  • Gross affront
  • Infectious, continuous or simulated illness
  • Sexual harassments or moral misconduct
  • Offences such expenses-account abuse or misappropriation of company funds
  • Willful bodily injury of colleagues, clients or superiors
  • Alcoholism
  • Taking unauthorized days off
  • False calculation of the working hours
  • Private phone-calls (after several warnings, quick phone-calls are allowed)
  • Surfing the net at workplace [See: Private Surfing at the workplace]
  • In case of suspicion of a serious job-related misconduct or a criminal offense which has a negative effect on the employment relationship.

Reasons of extraordinary termination from the employee: 

  • Arrears of wages (despite repeated warning)
  • Infringement of the contract, such as non-payment of agreed relocation costs
  • Reckless suspicion of the employer
  • Employment protection violations
  • If the employer is not able to provide the employee with a job with little physical activity despite illness