Casual Employment Contract

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  • P.D. 442, otherwise known as the Labor Code, Republic Act No. 386, Omnibus Rules Implementing the Labor Code, and Supreme Court Decisions, are the legal bases.
  • Employment contracts are consensual.
  • Casual employees are those who perform work that is incidental to the business of the employer.
  • The employment of casual employees should not exceed twelve (12) months.
  • Non-compliance of the requirements may result in the employee being reclassified as a regular employee.
  • Burden of proof is on the employer when a non-regular employment is challenged.
  • When in doubt, employment contracts are interpreted in favor of the employee.

Legal basis

The following are the legal bases:

  • P.D. 442, otherwise known as the Labor Code;
  • Omnibus Rules Implementing the Labor Code; and
  • Supreme Court Decisions.

Concept

A casual employment contract is an employment arrangement between an employer and a casual employee.

A casual employee is neither a regular employee, project employee, nor a seasonal employee, as defined under the Labor Code. (Article 295, Labor Code)

Casual employees are also referred to as contractual employees.

“Casual employment, the third kind of employment arrangement, refers to any other employment arrangement that does not fall under any of the first two categories, i.e., regular or project/seasonal.” (Universal Robina Sugar Milling Corporation v. Acibo, G.R. No. 186439, 15 January 2019)

Requirements

The following are the requirements:

1) The employee must perform work which are incidental to the usual trade or business of the employer (in direct contrast to the work of a regular employee); and

2) The employer must make such communication at the time of the probationary employee’s engagement.

Test

The principal test is that the employee should perform work that is only incidental to the usual trade or business of the employer employment and the employment should not exceed twelve (12) months.

Casual work, incidental to business of employer

Casual means “occasional, coming without regularity.” (Caro v. Rillaroza, G.R. No. L-9659, 30 September 1957)

“Other similar cases may be cited to show that employment which is not regular but is merely occasional and incidental, which although related to and connected with the regular business of the owner or employer, nevertheless, is not within the usual course of trade, business, profession or occupation of said employer, is to be considered casual employment within the meaning of the Workman’s Compensation Law.” (Caro v. Rillaroza, G.R. No. L-9659, 30 September 1957)

“The work is purely casual when it is not a part of the business of the employer’ complements and explains the term ‘purely casual’.” (Del Rosario v. Del Rosario, En Banc, G.R. Nos. L-18995-96, 29 December 1962, citing Mansal vs. P. P. Gocheco Lumber Co., L-8017, 30 April 1955)

“In a sawmill, for example, if a power unit running the mill gets out of order and a mechanic would be considered as purely casual, because the reparation of the mill is not the actual work or business of the sawmill but the sawing of lumber. But the piling up of lumber is work directly connected with the business of a lumber yard. Lumber must be sorted and piled up in groups according to sizes to facilitate handling and sale. The piling up of lumber is, therefore, an ordinary part of the work in a lumber yard.” (Del Rosario v. Del Rosario, En Banc, G.R. Nos. L-18995-96, 29 December 1962, citing Mansal vs. P. P. Gocheco Lumber Co., L-8017, 30 April 1955)

Burden of proof on the employer

When the validity of the employment arrangement is challenged, the burden of proof is on the employer.

When in doubt, interpreted in favor of the employee

“In case of doubt, all labor legislation and all labor contracts shall be construed in favor of the safety and decent living for the laborer.” (Article 1702, Civil Code)

References

  • Presidential Decree No. 442, a.k.a. Labor Code;
  • Omnibus Rules Implementing the Labor Code; and
  • Supreme Court Decisions (cited in the body)