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Notice of termination

Verified 16 avril 2020 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

In the event of dismissal, the termination of the employment contract does not take place immediately. This period constitutes the period of notice during which the employee continues to work (except for exemption).

Common law

The notice of termination is the period between the first presentation of the recommended letter to the employee and the end of his employment contract.

Any dismissed employee (whether for personal or economic reasons) must execute noticeexcept in the following cases:

  • Failure to execute (e.g. loss of driver's license)

During the notice period, the employee required to give notice continues to work in the company, under the usual conditions, and to receive his remuneration (salary, bonuses, if any...).

The notice period varies according to the employee's seniority in the company, under the following conditions:

General case

Less than 6 months

The notice period shall be fixed:

  • Either by collective agreement
  • By collective agreement
  • Or by usage practiced in the undertaking or profession

Between 6 months and 2 years

The notice period shall be fixed at 1 month..

At least 2 years

The notice period shall be fixed at 2 months..

Disabled worker

The period of notice of dismissal of a disabled worker shall be twice the period fixed for other employees, within the limit of 3 months..

  Please note : of treaty provisionscollective, contractual or statutory (VRP, journalists...) may provide for a more favorable notice or a condition of seniority for the employee.

The notice begins on the day of the first presentation of the registered letter notifying the dismissal (even if the employee has not recovered the mail).

The employer may dispense with notice. In this case, the employee cannot object. The employee must receive a notice compensation, for the period of notice not taken.

The employee may ask not to execute his notice, but his employer is not obliged to accept. If the employer agrees, the employer is not required to pay the notice compensation.

When the employee is exempted from giving notice, he may be hired by another company without waiting for the end of the contract (except non-competition clause).

  FYI : the waiver of notice does not change the date on which the contract ends.

Paid Leave

Dates of leave fixed before notification of dismissal

Paid leave during the notice period, requested from the employer prior to notification of termination, suspends the notice. Consequently, the notice period is extended by an amount equivalent to the leave period.

Dates of leave fixed after notification of dismissal

Paid leave during the notice period, to the employer after notice of termination do not suspend notice. Consequently, the notice period is not extended by an amount equivalent to the leave period.

Termination notified during paid leave

In this case, the notice will only begin after the leave with pay.

Accident or illness

Work stoppage for non-occupational disease shall not suspend or interrupt the advance notice.

Therefore, the notice period is not extended. The contract shall end on the date initially scheduled. The employee returns to work if his sick leave ends before the end of the contract (unless the employer grants an exemption).

Work accident or occupational disease

A stoppage of work due to an accident at work or an occupational disease occurring during the period of notice shall suspend the operation of the work. Consequently, the notice period is extended by the same period as the work stoppage.

  Please note : the notice may also be suspended or postponed in the event of agreement between the employer and the employee or if it is provided for by treaty.

Alsace and Moselle

Employees working in the departments of Moselle, Haut-Rhin and Bas-Rhin are subject to special provisions concerning the duration of the notice.

The employee is entitled to notice:

  • One day when his remuneration is fixed per day
  • One week where his remuneration is fixed per week
  • 15 days when his remuneration is fixed per month
  • 6 weeks where his remuneration is fixed per quarter or per longer period.

The following persons are entitled to 6 weeks' notice:

  • Teachers and persons employed in private homes
  • Commercial Clerks
  • Employees whose remuneration is fixed and who are permanently responsible for the direction or supervision of an activity or part thereof, or those entrusted with technical services requiring a certain qualification.

  Please note : contractual, collective, contractual or statutory provisions (VRP, journalists...) may provide for a more favorable notice or a condition of seniority for the employee.