May the services of a kasambahay [domestic worker]be terminated by the employer before the expiration of her contract?
The rule at present is that neither the domestic worker nor the employer may terminate the contract of the kasambahay before the expiration of the term except for grounds provided for in Republic Act (RA) 10361 or the Domestic Workers Act or Batas Kasambahay. Section 34 thereof enumerates the instances when the employer may lawfully terminate the services of the domestic worker, to wit:
“Section 34. Termination Initiated by the Employer.—An employer may terminate the services of the domestic worker at any time before the expiration of the contract, for any of the following causes:
(a) Misconduct or willful disobedience by the domestic worker of the lawful order of the employer in connection with the former’s work;
(b) Gross or habitual neglect or inefficiency by the domestic worker in the performance of duties;
(c) Fraud or willful breach of the trust reposed by the employer on the domestic worker;
(d) Commission of a crime or offense by the domestic worker against the person of the employer or any immediate member of the employer’s family;
(e) Violation by the domestic worker of the terms and conditions of the employment contract and other standards set forth under this law;
(f) Any disease prejudicial to the health of the domestic worker, the employer, or member/s of the household; and
(g) Other causes analogous to the foregoing.”
The employer who terminates the services of the kasambahay for reasons other than the aforementioned shall be liable to pay the kasambahay his/her earned compensation plus the equivalent of fifteen (15) days work by way of indemnity. If, however, the duration of the service of the kasambahay is not determined either in stipulation or by the nature of the service, the employer or the domestic worker may give notice to end the working relationship five (5) days before the intended termination of the service. The domestic worker and the employer may also mutually agree upon written notice to pre-terminate the contract of employment to end the employment relationship (Section 32, RA 10361).
We hope that we were able to answer your queries. Please be reminded that this advice is based solely on the facts that you have narrated and our appreciation of the same. Our opinion may vary when other facts are changed or elaborated.
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