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Austria: Termination of employment

Original and updating author: Silva Palzer, Eversheds Austria
Updating authors: Klaus Cavar and Lena-Sophie Kaltenegger, Eversheds Austria

Consultant editor: Martin Risak

Summary

  • The employer or employee may generally terminate an open-ended employment contract at any time by giving notice, without having to give a reason for the termination. (See General)
  • Notice periods may be set by statute, an applicable collective agreement or the employment contract, and rules in this area differ for white-collar employees and blue-collar employees. (See Notice periods)
  • The employer or employee may terminate an employment contract without notice only for substantial reasons that make it unreasonable to continue with the employment relationship. Such reasons are mostly specified by statute. (See Termination without notice)
  • Employees receive special protection against dismissal in certain circumstances - for example, during pregnancy and in the four months after childbirth, during parental leave, and while acting as a works council member - and may be dismissed only with the prior consent of a court and for specified reasons. (See Special dismissal protection)
  • Dismissal on grounds of redundancy is not generally subject to special rules or procedures, other than those that apply to ordinary termination of the employment contract, although employers must inform and consult the works council, and notify the Public Employment Service, in advance about planned collective terminations. (See Redundancy)
  • The employer and employee may terminate the employment contract at any time by mutual consent, and few statutory rules govern such terminations. (See Termination by mutual consent)
  • The employer must inform and, on request, consult the works council about dismissals. (See Termination procedures)
  • Employees are entitled to a severance payment when their employment ends in certain circumstances, either directly from their employer or from a collective employer-financed fund. (See Severance payments)
  • At the end of an employment relationship, the employer is obliged, at the employee's request, to provide a written certificate stating the nature and length of the employment. (See Certificate of employment)
  • A dismissal can potentially be challenged in a labour court on the grounds that it was based on an unlawful reason, was "socially unjustified" or was discriminatory. (See Contesting dismissals in court)