24 hour’s notice of termination

What are your legal remedies if your employee gives you only 24 hour’s notice?

24 hour’s notice of termination


An employee rushes to the CCMA if he thinks that his dismissal has been unfair but, strangely, he or she won’t think twice about giving you 24 hour’s notice if he finds a better job. He does this even if his employment contract states that termination must be on 30 day’s notice on either side.


What are your legal remedies?


The Basic Conditions of Employment Act provides for the following notice periods:

  1. one week, if the employee has been employed for six months or less;
  2. two weeks, if the employee has been employed for more than six months but not more than one year;
  3. four weeks, if the employee-
    1. has been employed for one year or more; or
    2. is a farm worker or domestic worker who has been employed for more than six months.

In NATIONAL ENTITLED WORKERS UNION v COMMISSION FOR CONCILIATION, MEDIATION & ARBITRATION & OTHERS (2007) 28 ILJ 1223 (LAC) the union employed an employee who left them without giving notice.  The Labour court held that this constituted a breach of contract but not an unfair labour practice.


So your only legal remedy is to sue for breach of contract for such damages as you can prove (e.g. wasted costs of training the employee, etc).

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