Resignation is the right of an employee to disassociate himself from employment.

At the Asian Institute Manage (AIM) labor law seminar last week, I received interesting questions from one of the participants. She asked whether an employee may be allowed a shorter 30-day service for her resignation, as well as whether it is possible for an employee to not comply with the 30-day resignation notice rule.

I answered in the affirmative for both questions provided certain conditions are met.

Concept of Resignation

Resignation is the right of the employee to leave his/her employment due to personal reasons. This right is provided for the in the Labor Code, viz:

“Art. 285. Termination by employee.

“An employee may terminate without just cause the employee-employer relationship by serving a written notice on the employer at least one (1) month in advance. The employer upon whom no such notice was served may hold the employee liable for damages.”

The written notice stated above is ordinarily referred to as theresignation notice.

General Rule: 30-Day Resignation Notice

The purpose of the 30-day resignation notice is to ensure a smooth turn-over and transfer of the work currently being held by the resigning employee. To avoid problems in the workplace, and to ensure continuous operations, labor law requires the employee to stay for at least 30 days.

During the 30-day period, the employer is expected to find a suitable replacement of the resigning employee or provide for ways so that other remaining employees may assume the work to be left behind.

Shortening of 30-Day Service

The 30-day service is discretionary on the employer. As stated earlier, the 30-day is designed in favor of the employer. That being the case, the employer may shorten and even waive the 30-day service.

“… The rule of requiring an employee to stay or complete the 30-day period prior to the effectivity of his resignation becomes discretionary on the part of management as an employee who intends to resign may be allowed a shorter period before his resignation becomes effective… (PHIMCO Industries v. NLRC, Carpio, G.R. No. 118041, 11 June 1997)”

To be clear, it is the employer who gets to decide on whether he is willing to waive or shorten the 30-day service for any resigning employee.

Exceptions to 30-Day Resignation Notice

Notwithstanding, there are instances when an employee may no longer need to tender a 30-day advance resignation notice. The Labor Code provides for exceptions to the 30-day resignation notice in favor of the employee:

“Art. 285. Termination by employee.

“x x x

“2. An employee may put an end to the relationship without serving any notice on the employer for any of the following just causes:

“a. Serious insult by the employer or his representative on the honor and person of the employee;

“b. Inhuman and unbearable treatment accorded the employee by the employer or his representative;

“c. Commission of a crime or offense by the employer or his representative against the person of the employee or any of the immediate members of his family; and

“d. Other causes analogous to any of the foregoing.”

If any of the above conditions happen, the employee is no longer required to tender a 30-day advance resignation notice and render such service. It should be pointed out that the grounds are not limited to the above list as the last one provides for other causes “analogous to any of the foregoing.” Meaning, similar situations may be a ground for the application of the exception to the 30-day resignation notice rule.

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I take this opportunity to thank Ariva! Events Management for inviting me as one of the nine speakers in their recently concluded labor law seminar entitled 2nd People and Labor Relations Forum: Labor Safety Works!: Managing Health, Safety Environment an Labor Law Regulatory Compliance, held at the Asian Institute Management (AIM), Makati City.

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