If not otherwise specified in the employment contract, the contract
can be terminated orally. For evidentiary purposes, however, you should
send a notice letter by registered mail. If you deliver the letter
personally, ask for an acknowledgement of receipt on a copy of the
letter for confirmation.
Termination is only effective once the
letter of termination has been received by the employer. The letter must
reach your employer on the last workday of the month at the latest.
The written notice must:
- Contain correct information about the employee and the employer
(name, address). Make sure the written notice reaches your employer’s
personnel department or your line manager.
- Specify the employment contract that you are terminating (Employment contract of …)
- Indicate the termination date (usually for the end of the month - check the period of notice).
- Be signed and dated.
You are not required to state why you are choosing to leave.
Periods of notice
Make sure that the period of notice agreed in the employment
contract was observed. If there is no written employment contract and no
collective employment agreement, the period of notice is regulated by
the Code of Obligations (CO). It comprises:
- 7 calendar days during the trial period (as of the end of any day)
- 1 month during the first year of service (as of the end of a given month)
- 2 months from the 2nd to the 9th year of service (as of the end of a given month)
- 3 months from the 10th year of service (as of the end of a given month)
- Fixed term employment contracts end on a fixed date. It is not
possible to terminate a fixed-term employment contract before the stated
date, unless the contract provides for an early termination or good
Employers must guarantee employees protection from termination for
the duration of military, civilian or civil defence service, and in the
event of illness, accident or pregnancy. Employees can still give notice
during this time.
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