Important and/or distinctive aspects of rights on termination in Ukraine

Ukrainian labour law is rather employee-friendly. Termination of employment is only possible in specific cases.

No reasons need to be given for termination:

  • during probation period;
  • due to expiry of the employment agreement; or
  • by mutual consent.

Possible reasons for termination include:

  • change in production and work organisation (incl. liquidation / reorganisation / insolvency);
  • transfer to the other company or elective position;
  • refusal to change employment location with the company or to continue employment due to change in essential work conditions;
  • staff reductions;
  • health condition / lack of qualifications or ability;
  • military or alternative service (in specific cases (continuing anti-terrorist operation in the Eastern Ukraine) position and salary are saved for one year);
  • reinstatement in position of the former employee.

Certain groups of employees are to be given priority in the event of staff reductions (e.g. employees with higher qualification / productivity, single-earners, employees with work-related injury / illness, long serving employees). Work council members may be dismissed only upon its consent. Pregnant female employees, single parents with children up to 3 years of age or single mothers with children up to 14 years of age / disabled children, and members of the work council board may be dismissed only in the event of the company’s liquidation.

Mass dismissal is defined as termination at the request of employer due to changes in the production and work organisation, including (1) liquidation / reorganisation / insolvency, (2) conversion of a company, or (3) staff reductions. There is a special procedure to observe for mass dismissal.

Dismissal due to health condition / lack of qualifications or ability to perform a certain type of work has to be justified by a medical report, performance evaluation report or other relevant evidence and is possible when no alternative job may be offered (or the employee refuses to accept it).

The reasons for termination with cause include:

  • employee’s continuous failure to perform his/her duties if previously subjected to disciplinary or civil liability;
  • unjustified absence from work (more than three hours per one business day);
  • continuous sick leave for more than four months (exceptions apply);
  • work under the influence of alcohol, drugs or other toxic substances (shall be officially evidenced);
  • theft (confirmed by court or other competent authorities);
  • single gross violation of duties by the director, chief accountant and their deputies;
  • wrongful acts of the director resulting in untimely payment of salaries or payment in an amount lower than a minimum established by law;
  • loss of confidence with employees working with valuables;
  • immoral offence by employees with educational functions; etc.

Employees may be subject to disciplinary proceedings for misconduct (e.g. warning or dismissal) for one month after misconduct was discovered and no later than six months after misconduct was committed. Severe misconduct or commission of a crime may justify an immediate dismissal without prior warning.

The employment with the company’s management may be terminated without cause (the provisions of the employment agreement / contract apply) subject to the termination payment of six average monthly incomes.