Does Employee Company Termination Policy Supersede Labour Policies ! - CiteHR
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Hi all,
One of my known company's HR policy on termination defines that if an employee takes more leaves..
1st Step / Action: He/She would be given warning letter,
2nd Step / Action: Even after issuing warning letter if he/she takes more leaves he can be terminated.
With this policy, company has recently terminated a 10yr experienced employee just for taking more leaves.
For your information:
The employee took 50 leaves in the last 6 months purely on medical grounds. and this is not a continuous leave and he had lots of LOPs as his available leaves exhausted.
for your information all leaves are informed leaves.
Does this policy supersede labour laws?
we felt that this is a harsh decision
Please let me know your thoughts on this
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Hi,
No Internal policy of any organization supersedes the Labour Law.The company policy is for internal governance and generally should be framed in coherence with Labour Laws.
Considering the fact that these are informed leaves the management's decision looks harsh.
Regards,
Bishwajeet
Dear Atom Leaf,

You have not mentioned whether your company has a certified standing orders or is merely governed by the HR policy.

Has your company taken such a decision in the past for any other employee? What was the designation of the person who has been terminated? (Worker, Supervisor, Manager???)

Generally company's do not take such an extreme step, when the employee has a decade of experience behind him.

In my opinion the termination is not because he has availed leave and is probably because of some other reason which I am not able to decipher as an outsider. A man with about 10 years of experience in my opinion must atleast have 20 - 30 days leave to his credit during this calendar year. As you have not indicated the number of LOP's it appears he has been availing leave frequently in the past few years too. It could be on medical grounds too which is not clear.

You can delibrate confidentially amongst yourselves and find out the real reason. On some occasions company loses the trust and faith on the employee on moral grounds and tend to look for an opportunity to severe the employer : employee relationship for some trivial reason. Professionally managed companies tend to initiate action for the respective misdeeds of the employee and do not take decisions like this, that too when the employee has availed leave on medical grounds and has produced a medical certificate to that effect. The genuiness of the medical certificate also matters (Whether he was really sick?). In some instances we have observed that employees produce fake medical certificates for availing unauthorised leave or for overstaying beyond the days of authorised leave.

Termination for availing leave on medical grounds on the face of it looks harsh.

M.V.KANNAN
Hi Kannan,
You are spot on !
Let me give you more clear details
> Company doesn't have standing orders
> This is the first time in 13 yrs of company's experience
> Designation: Asst. Manager
Leave Details:
Apr - 2 days
May - 6 days
Jun - 8 days
Jul - 15 days
Aug - 3 days
Sep - 10 days
Oct - 13 days
Nov - 20 days
Dear Friend,
The very fact that you mention "Leave" for the number of days the employee was absent from work, implied that his absence was authorized.
Therefore any disciplinary action would be ill advised and most inappropriate.
Also, you cannot have HR Policies which are in violation of statutory provisions.Law will always prevail.
The three step policy will not stand the test of law if someone challenges his termination in a Court of Law.
Best Wishes,
Vasant Nair
Any HR Policies of the organization must conform to the provisions of Labor laws.

The case projected by you refers to an Assistant Manager. Before terminating his services, a 'Show Cause Notice' should have been given which provides the employee with an opportunity to defend his case & justify his action in repeatedly taking leave for long durations (especially during the months of Sept to Nov).

In case his leave was duly approved by the sanctioning authority, it ceases to be a case of 'Absent without Leave'. But if he was truly absent without leave, it becomes a disciplinary case. The company policy on management of disciplinary cases comes into focus. In all fairness to the employee, a show cause notice must be served, specifying the date by which his explanation should be submitted, failing which his services could be terminated. Any decision taken by the management thereafter becomes procedurally & perhaps legally justified.

There is no harm in being compassionate if the employee has served the organization for 10 years, is not an habitual defaulter, has been committed to his job, but was compelled by circumstances to be absent without leave in the 11th year of his service. It is to be remembered that pardoning someone is more difficult than punishing him, and this is the key to win the loyalty of people in any organization.
I hope a person of Asst Manager level having 10 years experience in the company must have been holiding a responsible position by now. In such situation, taking frequent leave may hinder day-to-day decision making, meeting production target, etc.

But, if this is sanctioned / approved leave, then prima facie while submitting application itself, it should have been conveyed to the individual. You conveyed that he is "not well" or not keeping good health. Management also has difficulty in knowing whether this person is going to be productive or how long his continued absence is going to be. In a business environment no one is indispensable. whether you are an experienced person or joined recently. It must be a system driven.

Therefore the management needs to take a call on this. It looks, management is not able to tolerate his absense any more (may be authorized). If a person is of "continued ill health", one needs to have a closer look at this. Yes, if someone loses his job suddenly, he needs to have some means to survive, probably management may help him out find a job elsewhere. Or put him in some other department where his presence may not be that crucial. This trend can continue till such time he recuperates. Even then if he is not back to the normal health, then the management can take a decision.

I hope, your management had exhausted all the options and finally went for this. But, terminating someone's service (may be due to ill-health), need not be construed as illegal always.

V. Balaji
Dear ATOM LEAF
Before we discuss the matter in more details would like to know what is the reaction of the terminated employee ? It could very well be possible that the person concern was intimated about the action the senior management would take if he continued with the leave pattern.
Further as other members too have pointed out, company policies can not be over the law. Try to find out internally the root cause.
I assume that the person terminated did not fall under the definition of workmen and therefore challenging the action of the company may not be an easy task.
Regards
Preetam Deshpande
Dear Atom Leaf,
From the details furnished by you, I understand that the affected party is close to you. On his behalf you are asking these questions. Ok. Any company will not terminate any employee without any valid reasons.
If absence from the work is the sole cause, then the company would thoroughly investigate the reasons for employees absence then only take such decisions. You have not mentioned which company or is it an MNC or small firm or totally family managed enterprise etc.Also, you must note one thing Frequent absence from the work is also hampering company's day to day activities. You are right, that termination is a harsh decision compared to depromotion, holding incentives, then putting a black mark in his personal file.
If the grieved employee takes to court, usually a labour court (provided he is not working in managerial cadre), he may get some justice, which again is not confirmed.
Best Regards,
To continue further,
Mr.Atom leaf ,
You have mentioned the leave for absence is all informed leaves. Whether the information is approved and supported by relevant documents like Medical Certificate etc.
Pls clarify.
Regards
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