Delivery of notice or immediate cancellation to the employee by post
Mgr. Marek Zeman 13.03.2023
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In the course of its activity, every employer more than once deals with the need to terminate an employment relationship with an employee whose work performance he is not satisfied with. If the employer decides to terminate the employee's employment relationship by giving notice or immediate cancellation, then he must be careful not only to ensure that the conditions set by law for giving notice or immediate cancellation of the employment relationship are met, but also to properly deliver the notice of termination or immediate cancellation to the employee. The law places increased demands on the delivery of documents relating to the creation, change and termination of an employment relationship, precisely because of their importance for the duration or content of the employment relationship itself.
The vast majority of employers are probably aware that for a valid termination of an employment relationship it is not enough to deliver a notice of termination, for example via a simple e-mail message addressed to the employee, however, for the termination of an employment relationship, even registered mail to the addressee's home country will often be insufficient, which in other cases is relatively safe and proven method of delivering documents.
The aim of this contribution is to draw attention to the legal requirements for the delivery of documents relating to the creation, changes and termination of the employment relationship, through the operator of postal services, typically České pošta, s.p.
Mail delivery requirements
It follows from the provisions of § 334 and § 336 of the Labor Code that in the case of delivery of documents relating to the creation, changes and termination of the employment relationship through a postal service operator, the employer is obliged to:
- Deliver documents to the employee's own hands,
- Choose a postal service that will result in the obligation of the postal service operator to deliver the postal item containing the document in question in accordance with the terms of the Labor Code,
- Send a document to the employee's last address, which the employee communicated in writing to the employer a
- Ensure that the delivery of the document is evidenced by a written record of delivery (receipt).
What if the employee does not take delivery
The document addressed to the employee may also be delivered to a person other than the employee, on the condition that this person is authorized to accept such document by the employee on the basis of a power of attorney with an officially verified signature of the employee.
In the event that the employee receives the delivered parcel from the postman and confirms its receipt in writing, then it can be summarized that it is sufficient to send the document by registered mail to the employee's own hands, addressed to the address of the employee notified in writing at the last employer, or to the address of the employee's agent for delivery.
What to expect if the shipment does not fly
However, problems usually arise when the postman fails to reach the employee and the employee does not take delivery. For this case, the Labor Code stipulates additional conditions that must be observed under penalty of invalidity of delivery. Given that the employer usually cannot know when sending the parcel whether the postman will be able to reach the employee and deliver the parcel or not, it is necessary to keep in mind when preparing the shipment that:
- The law requires that an undelivered parcel be stored at the post office for 15 days,
- The postal carrier must notify the employee (or authorized representative for delivery) in writing that the parcel was delivered to him unsuccessfully,
- The notification of the postal carrier according to point 6) must contain an invitation to pick up the parcel within 15 days, including information on where, on which day and at what time the parcel can be picked up,
- The notification of the postal carrier according to point 6) must also include instructions on the consequences of refusing to accept the documents or not providing the cooperation necessary for the delivery of the documents.
In this case, the law places requirements primarily on the procedure of the postman, who, in the event of failure to reach the employee, is obliged to drop a written notification of an unsuccessful delivery attempt into his mailbox (or delivery agent) together with the above-mentioned instructions. It is clear that the employer, as the sender, has only a limited influence on whether the postman will physically drop the notice into the employee's mailbox and how the above legally required instructions will be communicated to the employee. Therefore, if the postman resigns from his duties and does not put a notice in the employee's mailbox or does not properly instruct him, then it will usually be his fault, but for the employer it will primarily mean invalid delivery of the document.
Using the correct postal envelope
However, the employer still has the option to significantly increase the chance of proper delivery of the document in accordance with the above conditions, by choosing the correct postal envelope for sending the document. There is a special envelope with a red stripe on which everything necessary is already pre-printed for sending important documents in accordance with § 334, paragraph 1 of the Labor Code. The envelope itself shows the sender's request for the delivery of the shipment by registered mail exclusively to the addressee, it contains the delivery note, information about the storage period of 15 days and also a clipping with notification and instructions according to the Labor Code, including instructions that the shipment is considered to have been delivered on the last day of the 15-day period storage periods.
Therefore, if the postman fulfills his duty and, in the event that the employee cannot be reached, tears off the appropriate part of this special envelope with notification and instructions, adds information about the place and time for picking up the package, and drops it into the employee's mailbox, there will usually be formal legal requirements for delivery through the postal service operator are met.
By using just this type of postal envelope, the employer is able to significantly increase the chances of proper delivery of documents in accordance with the law, and therefore its use in cases of delivery of notices, immediate termination of employment and other important documents can only be recommended. This does not mean that without using this special postal envelope it is not possible to properly deliver the document in accordance with the Labor Code, it is certainly possible, but it will probably be an unnecessary additional complication for the employer.
Recently, we noticed a problem with the availability of this postal envelope, when it was not available not only at the regular branches of the Czech Post in Prague, but not even at the so-called Main Post Office in Prague in Jindřišská Street. In the event that the employer would like to use this postal envelope, he should take into account possible complications in finding it, or obtain it in advance.
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