While the employment contract is made with the agreement of both the employer and the employee, its termination takes place with the declaration of one party. Termination of the employment contract by the employee is referred to as resignation. In accordance with the Labor Law No. 4857, which regulates Employee-Employer relations, the employee and the employer must pay attention to certain aspects in order to exit a job while protecting all her/his rights. In this article, we will discuss what should be considered when resigning from the perspective of both the employee and the employer.
Resignation Must Be in Handwriting
Resignation petitions must be handwritten and signed. Letters of resignation written and signed on the computer will put the employer at a disadvantage in the face of the employee’s claim that s/he signed under compulsion before a potential judicial case. It is also important that the resignation letter is signed with a wet signature.
Week Holiday Rights Must Be Observed
The day on which the employee submits his resignation is also important in terms of the right to “week vacation”. In accordance with the Labor Law No. 4857, the worker who completes his weekly work is given an uninterrupted rest for 24 hours, and the worker is paid for this day as if he had worked. This right, which we call the weekly holiday wage, does not disappear if the worker resigns after completing his weekly work. In other words, if the worker leaves the job on Friday, when he completes his weekly work, in a workplace where he works 5 days a week, the right to a week’s vacation must be given to him, and the dismissal process must be carried out as of Sunday. For this process, it is appropriate to update the employee’s resignation letter to indicate that he has left as of this date.
Notice Period Liability Should Not Be Forgotten
When the employment contract is terminated, the employer has the responsibility to notify the employee and the employee to the employer beforehand. How much prior notice is required is determined by the employee’s seniority. The party that does not comply with the deadlines will have to pay compensation to the other party.
Period of notice:
2 weeks for workers with at least 6 months of seniority,
4 weeks for those with 6 months to 1.5 years of seniority,
6 weeks for those with 1.5-3 years of seniority,
8 weeks for those who work more than 3 years.
(These periods are the minimum periods stipulated in the Law, they can be increased with employment contracts)
If the worker wishes to resign, s/he must be mindful of how long before s/he has to tell the employer. If s/he resigns and leaves the job immediately without considering this period, the employer has the right to demand notice from the worker. The notice pay is calculated over the amount of the employee’s permanent earnings corresponding to 1 month. For example, an employee who has a notice period of 4 weeks and quits without using it may have to pay notice compensation worth 4 weeks, i.e. 28 days, to his/her employer. Only the employer cannot deduct this compensation from the employee’s wage without the employee’s consent.
The notice period does not apply to all dismissals. All exits that must be used within the notification period as regulated in the Labor Law No. 4857.
Pay Attention to Probation Period
Notice period does not apply during probation period.
In the vast majority of employment contracts, a probationary period is determined for the months when the worker first starts work. According to the Labor Law No. 4857, the probation period can be a maximum of 2 months. For unionized employees, this period can be extended up to 4 months with collective bargaining agreements.
An employee who has a 2-month probationary period in his employment contract does not use the notice period if s/he resigns within 2 months from the date of employment. Likewise, if the employer will dismiss the worker within the first 2 months, the former may terminate the contract without stating any reason and without complying with the notice periods.
Reason for Resignation is Important for Compensation Rights
The reason why the employee terminates the employment contract is important in terms of some of his rights. In some cases of dismissal, even if the party who terminates the contract is an employee, the right to severance pay may arise.
An employee who resigns due to marriage, military service, retirement, and the fulfillment of conditions other than age for retirement can leave the job without notice, or if he has worked at the same employer for at least 1 year, he also gets the right to severance pay.
Resignation due to marriage is a right granted only to female workers. A female worker may terminate her employment contract within 1 year from the date of marriage by being entitled to severance pay. For this reason, the employee who will resign on the grounds of marriage should pay attention to the 1-year period. For this reason, there is no notice period and notice compensation for dismissals.
A male worker may terminate his employment contract due to military service. Employees with at least 1 year of seniority will also be entitled to severance pay. Workers who meet the retirement conditions other than age can also receive their severance pay rights when they resign by submitting the relevant letter from SSI to the workplace.
In order to avoid losing rights, the reasons mentioned above must be written in the resignation petitions. For example, it is extremely important for the worker who terminates his employment contract due to military service to indicate this in his resignation letter. The severance pay paid by the employer will become official for this reason. The existence of these justifications in the petition is important during the inspection of the income tax and insurance exemptions applied in the payroll.
At the same time, the document of the reason for resignation must be submitted as an annex to the resignation. For example, the employee who left due to marriage must submit a photocopy of the marriage certificate and the workplace as an attachment to the resignation petition. The employer must keep these documents in the personnel file.
In the event that the worker terminates the employment contract immediately for just cause, other than these reasons, the notice period is not applied, and the severance pay rights will be given to the worker. These situations are listed in Article 24 of the Labor Law No. 4857. If the worker terminates the contract for one of the reasons listed in this article, he will receive the right of seniority despite his own resignation.
Regardless of the reason, whether the worker is dismissed or resigned, if he has annual leaves that he previously deserved but did not use, he must be paid in wages. Unused annual leave rights do not burn when the employment contract is terminated. It is paid to the worker by converting it into wages.
Unused leaves are paid on the worker’s last bare daily wage without the side benefits (i.e. food, transport aids). The bare daily wage is calculated according to the number of days left.
In cases where the worker completes the year and deserves new leave on the date of dismissal, the amount of these leaves must also be paid to the worker.
When a worker resigns, there is generally no entitlement to unemployment benefits. However, in some resignation reasons, the employee has the right to receive unemployment benefits. The worker who submits his resignation by citing the reasons listed in Article 24 of the Labor Law No. 4857 is entitled to unemployment benefit. In this entitlement, the exit code that the employer chooses by taking into account the reason for resignation while making the dismissal notification is critical. For unemployment benefits, the employee must also fulfill other conditions, apart from the reason for leaving the job.