Basic Conditions of Employment Act Termination of Contract

The Basic Conditions of Employment Act, also known as the BCEA, sets out the minimum requirements that an employer must adhere to when employing staff in South Africa. The BCEA outlines the rights of employees and the obligations of employers in terms of working conditions, including termination of employment contracts.

Termination of Employment

Termination of employment refers to the end of an employment contract. This can occur for a variety of reasons, including resignation, retirement, dismissal, or the expiry of a fixed-term contract. The BCEA states that the termination of a contract must be in writing, and both the employer and employee must have a copy.

Notice of Termination

If an employer wishes to terminate an employment contract, they are required by law to give notice to the employee. The length of the notice period will depend on how long the employee has been employed. For employees who have been employed for less than six months, the notice period is one week. For employees who have been employed for six months or longer, the notice period is four weeks.

Severance Pay

In some cases, an employer may be required to pay severance pay to an employee who has been terminated. This is usually the case if the termination is due to operational requirements, such as the closure of a business. The amount of severance pay will be calculated based on the employee`s length of service and salary.

Unfair Dismissal

An employee may also have grounds for unfair dismissal if they believe that they have been terminated unfairly. In such cases, the employee can approach the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) for assistance. The CCMA will investigate the matter and make a ruling on whether the dismissal was fair or not.


In South Africa, the Basic Conditions of Employment Act governs the termination of employment contracts. Employers are required to give notice of termination, and in some cases, pay severance pay. If an employee believes that they have been unfairly dismissed, they can approach the CCMA for assistance. By adhering to the regulations set out in the BCEA, employers can ensure that they are acting in accordance with the law when terminating contracts.

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Datum: Sonntag, 14. Mai 2023
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