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GRP Rainer LLP

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GRP Rainer Rechtsanwälte – Experience in asserting exceptional notice of dismissal

May 2017

Exceptional notice of dismissal needs to be thoroughly prepared. The law firm GRP Rainer Rechtsanwälte has the necessary experience when it comes to asserting exceptional notice of dismissal.

Unlike in the case of ordinary notice of dismissal, there are no notice periods that need to be observed when issuing exceptional notice terminating an employment relationship. This can be done without notice. That being said, exceptional notice of dismissal with immediate effect is only possible if there is good cause justifying this. Labour courts frequently have to rule on whether exceptional notice of dismissal has been issued effectively. In doing so, the courts balance the employer’s interest in bringing the employment relationship to an immediate end and the employee’s interest in continuing said relationship, at least until the next possible termination date pursuant to the ordinary notice period. Exceptional notice of dismissal is only effective if the employer’s interest outweighs that of the employee. Thus, this is ultimately always a decision that is made on a case-by-case basis.

For this reason, it is all the more important for employers to be able to properly justify their decision to issue exceptional notice of dismissal. GRP Rainer Rechtsanwälte has a great deal of experience in the field of employment law and can assess whether dismissal with immediate effect makes sense or whether milder measures ought to be taken beforehand.

Good cause is a prerequisite for exceptional notice of dismissal. This normally relates to serious breaches of duty on the part of the employee. This kind of breach of duty may have occurred, for instance, if an employee fails to perform his work as agreed in his employment contract, conducts himself in an offensive manner vis-à-vis his superiors and / or colleagues, or in the event of physical altercations. The bottom line is that it must no longer be reasonable to expect the employer to continue the employment relationship any longer without having to observe the ordinary notice period of dismissal.

The courts also review whether the employer could have had recourse to milder means as a way of drawing the employee’s attention to his breaches of duty and encouraging him to change his conduct. The first step that typically comes into consideration in doing so is to issue a formal written warning. If the employee does not react to the formal warning as hoped, it may, depending on the given circumstances, nevertheless be sufficient to issue ordinary notice of dismissal having regard to the relevant notice periods. In the case of exceptional notice of dismissal, the employer needs to demonstrate that it had no other option and that continuing the employment relationship would have been unreasonable.

Lawyers who are experienced in the field of employment law can advise employers when legal disputes arise pertaining to the workplace.

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