Illegal termination of employment (Meaning and Law)
termination of employment comes into picture when an employer/organisation
terminates the services of their employee for unreasonable, unjustified reasons
without showing any evidence of negligence, misconduct or offence on the part
of the employee.
In regards to
workmen, the employment termination is regulated by the Industrial Disputes Act,
1947. Termination of employment can be through ‘lay-off’ or ‘retrenchment’.
Lay-off happens when the employer fails to continue employment due to shortage
of raw material, etc. while retrenchment is the termination of employment for
reasons other than those of voluntary retirement, superannuation or ill-health.
In regards to
white-collar jobs, the employment termination is regulated by their individual
employment contracts in compliance with the Indian Contracts Act, 1872.
Important Things to Remember
Employment of a workman who has
been in employment at that organisation for atleast 1 year can only be
terminated with a 30-90 days advance notice in writing indicating the reasons
for the same.
Compensation equivalent to the
average pay of 15 days has to be paid for every completed year of continuous
service (for a maximum of six months of pay).
Employer is bound to notify the
labour authorities about the retrenchment.
Legal Options for Workmen
The workman should raise the
dispute before the conciliation officer.
If not resolved by the
conciliation officer, the state government may refer the dispute to the labour
court or dismiss the claim.
If labour court dismisses the
claim, appeal to the respective High Court is the path.
Legal Options for White-collar employment
Send a legal notice to the
If the employer is not ready
for settlement, file a civil suit for breach of contract and recovery of money
Grounds upon which the courts may allow a claim
against illegal termination
When the employee has been a
victim of unfair trade practises;
When there is want of good
When the employer/organisation
is guilty of an error or has violated the principles of natural justice;
When the findings on material
depict that the termination was baseless and perverse.
Statutory Law References
Disputes Act, 1947
Code of Civil
State Of Uttar
Pradesh and Anr v. Kaushal Kishore Shukla 1991 SCR (1) 29
Bharat Forge Co
Ltd v. Uttam Manohar Nakate (2005) 2 SCC 489
Paul v. BSNL & Anr. (2014) 15 SCC 313
Important Do(s) and Dont(s)
When the company engages in
talks with you about your employment termination, start asking for evidence
upon which they base their reasons;
consultation in the beginning of this occurrence;
Start documenting all the
discussions and write down the names of all the people involved;
Ask for a copy of a warning by
the employer to you against any misconduct or negligence.