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Termination

Notice

Are employers required to give notice of termination?

As a rule, permanent employment agreements cannot be terminated by simply giving notice to the employee. Terminations must follow the proper procedure, which is strictly regulated by the General Labour Law.

However, for fixed-term employment agreements (with a term greater than three months), the employer must give the employee 15 working days’ notice before the agreement expires.

Further, in case of a redundancy procedure, the employee must be given 30 or 60 days’ notice, depending on whether the dismissal will impact less or more than 20 employees, respectively.

Termination during a trial period does not require notice.

Redundancies

What are the rules that govern redundancy procedures?

Redundancy procedures (ie, terminations for business-related reasons based on market, structural or technological grounds) must follow a complex procedure, which will differ depending on whether the redundancy impacts more or less than 20 employees. This procedure includes notifying the General Labour Inspectorate and providing a written explanation to the employees of the reasons for the redundancy and the selection criteria.

Employees dismissed under redundancy procedures are entitled to compensation, the amount of which will depend on both the employee’s length of service and the company’s size.

Are there particular rules for collective redundancies/mass layoffs?

Collective redundancies (ie, dismissals of more than 20 employees based on market, structural or technological reasons) must follow a procedure almost identical to that for individual redundancies. The main difference is that the General Labour Inspectorate has 22 working days to perform any due diligence or investigation, as opposed to the 15 working days required for individual redundancies.

Another difference is the notice period that must be given to employees, which is:

  • 60 days in collective redundancies; and
  • 30 days in individual redundancies.

Protections

What protections do employees have on dismissal?

Angolan law protects employment stability and thus prohibits dismissals without cause (whether subjective or objective).

In case of unlawful dismissal, employees may claim:

  • damages caused by the dismissal; 
  • reinstatement in the company;
  • the salary accrued between the termination date and the date in which the employee was hired by another company, capped at up to six months, depending on the size of the company; and
  • compensation, the amount of which will depend on the company’s size and the employee’s length of service, in cases where reinstatement is impossible or the employee refuses to be reinstated.

Some categories of employee have special protection against dismissal – namely:

  • pregnant employees;
  • new mothers (up until one year after childbirth);
  • union or former union representatives;
  • miners;
  • former combatants; and
  • employees with reduced capacity equal or superior to 20%.

The General Labour Inspectorate’s approval may be required in some cases.

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