Sick leave during advance notice period

Scenario: Employer notifies employee of termination or employee notifies employer of resignation

Fact: During this period the employee is required to work, unless waived by the employer

 

Question: what happens when the employee is sick and procures a doctor’s note ?

Answer:

If an employee is sick during advance notice period and produces a doctor’s sick note to the employer, he is eligible for sick pay, according to the sick day law and contingent on his accumulated sick day balance.

The advance notice period is a work period for all intent and purposes, employer-employee relations still exist, for better and for worse.

This is true when the employer has given notice before termination and when an employee has given notice before resignation.

The date of termination or resignation and end of employer-employee relations remain the same as it originally was written in the advance notification and is not pushed back due to the sick days.

Severance Pay – a minor detail you should be aware of

Everyone knows that when an employee is terminated and he has worked for at least one year for the employer, he is eligible for severance pay. Most employees also know that severance pay is one month’s pay (according to the last full salary) multiplied by his tenure. Or in layman’s terms, one month’s pay for each full year worked and prorated for any portions of a year.

The “minor” detail that everyone should be aware of is the question of what actually is the “last full salary” ?

Well, it really depends on how you are employed. The simple case is that of an employee who receives a monthly based salary, then the above would apply.

However, there are other types of salaries: Hourly based, Daily based, job based.

Many unique scenarios can also have an effect on what the “last month’s pay” actually is and thus effecting how severance pay is calculated.

For instance, an employee who worked full-time and changed to part time at some point (or vis-versa), an employee whose pay was reduced, an employee that had a temporary change in his last salary, an employee whose type of employment changed in essence, an employee whose position changed in essence or an employee who receives a base pay and changing commissions.

The Labor laws all specifically address these scenarios by dividing up the salary into several parts, before and after the change and a separate calculation is done for each part accordingly.

Those who receive changing salaries due to hourly or daily rates that change each month due to the number of hours/days worked or due to commissions – an average of the last 12 salaries is used as a basis for severance pay calculation.

 

Section 14 of the Severance pay law

 

The severance pay law (1963) is the law that defines the employee’s right to severance pay at the end of employment.

On a side note, there are criteria specifically defined in the law that determine under which circumstances an employee is entitled to severance pay. But, that is not what this blog post is about. However, there are 2 basic criteria that determine eligibility for severance pay in regular cases: An employee worked for at least one year and he was fired. If the employee resigns he forfeits the right to severance pay. (There are exceptions, but we won’t get into that right now).

Section 14 of the severance pay law is titled “severance and benefits” and it deals with cases in which both the employer and employee made contributions (via the payslip) towards pension or savings plans. According to section 14, the monies accumulated in the “severance pay” portion can be substituted for severance pay. Or in other words, by releasing the severance pay portion to the employee, the employer would then be exempt from paying any severance pay !

In 1998, the Minister of Labor signed an order enabling employers together with their employees to agree on enforcing section 14 at the place of employment. In this case, they do not need the Minister’s signature to enforce it. However, there are certain criteria that must be met in order to enforce section 14:

  1. The payments to the pension plan/ savings plan need to be the % defined in the general permit (including insurance coverage).
    This means only full pension and not mandatory pension
  2. There needs to be explicit agreement in writing between the employer and the employee, prior to start of employment.
    This means that it is part of the work agreement and known in advance.
  3. The employer needs to forfeit explicitly return of severance pay to him if the employee resigns.
    This means that employee leaving employ for whatever reason would receive the severance pay that has accumulated in the pension plan and nothing more.
  4. The monthly payments need to be paid on-time  !
    This means that the deductions from payroll need to be deposited into the pension plan by the 15th of each month. If the employer writes the check to the pension plan on the 15th and sends it via mail – that doesn’t count. One can easily see the date of deposit on the semi-annual statements the pension plan companies are required to send to the employees.

All of the above conditions need to be met in order for this to be legal.

The above is a risk for both sides: for the employee, forfeits his right to full severance pay, even when fired. On the other hand, the employer forfeits his right to reclaim severance pay from the fund in case of resignation.

The aforementioned permit from 1998  allows for retroactive enforcement provided it be in writing and within 3 months of starting the pension plan for the employee, no later.

So if your employer wakes up one day and decides that section 14 should apply to all employees – not so fast !

Employers who give Mandatory pension plan only – the law which came into effect starting Jan 2008 at lower rates than full pension plans are not eligible foe section 14 of the severance pay law.

 

 

You are entitled to a hearing before termination

If an employer decides to terminate an employee, he is required by law to grant the employee a hearing prior to terminating the employee.
While this may not change the employer’s mind about the termination, it does clear the air by allowing both sides to express themselves and lay everything on the table.

Employers in the public sector and large companies usually do this as standard procedure, while many private sector and small employers tend to ignore this basic issue which gives respect to employees as people.

Failure to grant a hearing to an employee prior to termination, may void the termination. Employees who were not given a hearing prior to termination are advised to file a complaint with the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Labor’s hotline 1-800-354-354 and seek damages for infringement of rights via Labor court.

Q & A regarding part-time jobs

Q  How is Havra’a configured for an employee who is employed in a part-time position ?

Employees who are employed part-time are paid the Havra’a supplement pro-rated to the actual % of the position worked. If you worked 55 %, you would get 55 % of the Havra’a supplement.

Q  I work 80 % position and recently returned from Maternity leave. I asked my boss to allow me to work 1 hour less each day (nursing hour) as defined by law. My boss says this doesn’t apply to me as I don’t work full-time. Is he correct ?

A  Yes he is, section 7 of Women’s employment law allows women who returned from maternity leave the right to work 1 hour less each day, with no deduction in pay for 4 months, provided they work full-time. If you work 99% position you are not eligible.

My Job benefits include an annual payment of my car insurance, test and car license. I was told that if I work 75% position, I would only get 75% of these expenses. What is the logic behind this ? The expenses are still 100% ?

A  The logic is simple. This is a salary benefit and not a return of expenses. Although the expense remains the same for the employee, the employer’s participation is reduced according to the % of the position worked.

Q  I work at a 50% position. Many times we have pressure at work and I end up staying extra hours, but I am always paid 100% for these hours. Shouldn’t I be paid 125 % and 150% for overtime hours ?

A Actually, no. You need to fill up the hours you worked to 100% position. only then are you eligible for overtime hours.
The hours you worked that are in excess of your defined position are called extra hours or excess hours and they are paid at 100% rate. Overtime hours is a term specifically defined in labor laws as anything over full-time.

Q How are taxes configured for a part-time position ?

A Taxes are configured from the actual gross pay and the % of position is irrelevant.
However, if you work at more than one place of employment, you need to do a tax alignment (teum mas).

Q My boss wants me to go down to half-time position due to a slack in sales. Can he force me to do this ?

A Contract changes, especially in % of position, are acts that need consent of both sides (employer and employee). if an employee forces an employee to lower their % of position, this is a one-sided change of contract which enables an employee to resign their position while retaining rights to severance pay (provided the employee has worked 12 months).

Q I worked for 10 years full-time and now my boss wants me to go down to half-time. How will this effect my severance pay ?

A Ordnance 7 of the severance pay law specifically determines that severance pay shall be calculated according to the last full-time salary, pro-rated to the actual % of position worked for the whole period of employment. In other words,for the 10 years you worked full-time, you would be eligible for severance pay of ten full monthly salaries (1 for each year) and for the time you worked at half-time, you would be eligible for 1/2 a full monthly salary for each year worked.

How much advance notice are you entitled to when terminated ?

When an employee is terminated from his/her position they are entitled by law to advance notice from the employer. The amount of advance notice is based on an employee’s tenure with the employer as well as his pay rate.

For employees being paid at an hourly or daily rate the employee is entitled to:

During the first year = 1 day for each month worked.
During the 2nd year = 14 days + 1 day for each two months worked.
During the 3rd year = 21 days + 1 day for each month worked.
From 4 years and on – one month’s notice.

For employees being paid at a monthly rate, the employee is entitled to:
During the first 6 months = 1 day for each month worked.
From the 7th month until the completion of 1 year = 6 days + 2 1/2 days for each month worked.
After completion of 1 year tenure = one month’s notice.

The Israeli Employee’s Rights Handbook

Due to increasing request and popular demand, work has commenced on the new ‘Employee’s Rights in Israel Handbook” soon to be released.
The handbook is in English and explains, in easy to understand language, basic payroll and labor law issues that are relevant to anyone who works as a salaried employee or is an employer of employees. The handbook is a means for employees and employers alike to become familiar with employee rights according to the Israeli Labor laws and avoid unnecessary confrontations in the future.
The Handbook will be available through this site only – stay tuned !
Place your order for the the handbook today and receive a 10% discount on the price ! This offer is for a limited time only.

send an email to Moshe.israpay@gmail.com to reserve your copy today  !