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    Know your Rights

    Information about cooperation procedure - related termination of employment contract

    After the cooperation proceedings have ended, the employer usually announces the amounts of the contracts to be terminated. When an employment contract is being terminated due to collective reasons (for example financial reasons), the employee will be summoned to a hearing where the reasons for the termination will be explained and a notice of the termination will be given. The notice time begins the day after the termination and is usually 14 days if the employment relationship has lasted no longer than 1 year, 1 month, if the employment relationship has lasted no longer than 1-4 years, 2 months, if the employment relationship has lasted no longer than 4-8 years, 4 months, if the employment relationship has lasted no longer than 8-12 years and 6 months, if the employment relationship has lasted no longer than 12 years.

    During the notice period the employment relationship continues normally. The employer must pay the salary and the employee needs to fulfill their work duties unless the employer specifically frees the employee from the work duties. Also the occupational health care and such things remain available until the end of the employment contract. When the employment relationship ends, the employer must pay out all salaries, annual holiday pays, extra annual holiday pays etc. Unless otherwise agreed upon, the employer must pay all the owed salaries etc. the last day of the employment relationship. If the employer fails to do so, the employee is entitled to up to six days salary during the waiting period.

    The employer must try to find a new position in their organization for those employees whose employment contracts are terminated due to collective reasons. Also, within 9 months after the employment relationship has ended, the employer may not offer positions to others than those whose contracts have been terminated, if the work offered could be suitable for them. The employer must by law re-hire terminated employees that are job seekers with the unemployment office, if suitable work is available by the employer. Employees working under fixed-term contracts will, however, not be eligible for this.

    If there has not been a valid legal reason for the termination of the employment contract, the employee may sue the employer within 2 years time of the ending of the employment contract to seek damages worth of 3-24 months salary.

    When the employment relationship has ended, the employee must sign up as a job seeker at the unemployment office. This can also be done on-line. If the job seeker meets the requirements (26 calendar weeks of previous work history while also simultaneously being a member of an unemployment fund during the previous 28 months) they are eligible to receive earnings based unemployment benefits, which is paid out by the unemployment fund. Members of the unions, which are publishing Acatiimi, are insured in the Teachers' unemployment fund. If these requirements are not met, the job seeker is entitled to the lower forms of unemployment benefits provided by Kela. Please visit www.opetk.fi, www.kela.fi and tyj.fi for further details. You can also find an unemployment benefit calculator and a lot of material in English.

    Unions help their members with questions about cooperation proceedings, ending of an employment relationship, unemployment issues and such things

    FUURT and other unions will be attending a meeting held at Porthania, University of Helsinki February 2. 2016 and we will be available to discuss for example the cooperation proceedings and unemployment issues

    text Mia Weckman
    lawyer, the Finnish union of university researchers and teachers

    • Painetussa lehdessä sivu 38