I have been working in a company for two years. A month ago, the company fired me without a cause, and at the same time it asked me to work for 3 months, the notice period, according to the employment contract signed between us and approved by the Ministry of Labor. Am I obligated to work during the notice period even though the employer was the one who terminated my services without cause? What is the position of the law if I refuse to work during the warning period? Does the non-compete clause apply to me? Isn’t it legally invalid for me, considering that the employer was the one who terminated my services? Please advise.
To answer such question, I would advise the questioner that:
1 - You must work during the notice period if the company requests that even if the company fired you. As per Article 43 of the Labor Law No. 33 of 2021, the worker shall be entitled to his full wage for the notice period according to the last wage he was obtaining and he shall work during that period if the employer requests the same from him. However, it may be agreed upon exemption from the notice period condition or reducing its period while preserving all the rights of the worker for the notice period agreed upon in the employment contract.
2 - In case you refuse to work during the notice period, you have to pay a compensation equal to your salary for the 3 months. The same Article states that: “The party who did not abide by the notice period shall pay to the other party compensation, which is called notice period allowance, even if the absence of notification does not cause damage to the other party and the compensation shall be equal to the worker’s wage for the full notice period or the remaining part thereof.”
3 - As per Article 10 of the same mentioned law, the non-competition clause shall be nullified if the employer terminates the employment contract in violation of the provisions of law. The Cabinet Resolution no. 1 of 2022 on the Implementation of the labour law in its Article 12 states that the non-competition clause shall not apply if the reason for terminating the contract is attributed to the employer or the breach of his legal or contractual obligations.
However, if a dispute arises over the non-competition clause and it is not settled amicably, the matter shall be referred to the judiciary and the burden of proving the alleged damage shall lie with the employer.