If an employment relationship is not limited in time, the cooperation can only be effectively terminated with notice. If employers or employees want to terminate the employment relationship, a letter of termination is required. Here you can find out what should not be missing in the letter of resignation and what is important when you write a resignation.
Notice of cancellation: You should bear this in mind when writing a cancellation
If you want to change jobs, you must first quit your previous job. Termination is always necessary unless it is a fixed-term contract. Fixed-term employment contracts cannot usually be terminated properly unless there is a corresponding provision in the employment contract or a valid collective agreement. If this is not the case, only extraordinary termination is possible in the case of a fixed-term employment contract due to a serious breach of duty by the employer or employee. If a fixed-term contract is not terminated, it will expire at the agreed time.
A termination is a unilateral declaration of intent by the terminating party, which the contractual partner does not have to agree to for it to take effect. If you are writing a resignation letter, you should make sure that your resignation meets all criteria for its effectiveness. The termination must be made in writing in any case. This emerges from Section 623 of the German Civil Code (BGB). Electronic termination is therefore not permitted, which means that you have to send your letter of termination by post or in person. You cannot cancel by email or even SMS.
If you quit your job, you must observe the notice period. The deadline can be found in either the employment contract or an applicable collective agreement. If nothing has been agreed under individual or collective law, the statutory notice periods apply. For you as an employee, this means a notice period of four weeks outside of the probationary period. You can cancel on the 15th or the end of a calendar month. The decisive factor is not when you write your letter of termination, but when it reaches the recipient.
For the letter of termination to be effective, it must be clear that you are resigning. The word “termination” should already appear in the subject line. The letter of termination must also be dated, include the time of termination, and be personally signed.
Tips for setting up your letter of termination
You should also write down both your and your employer’s contact details in your letter of resignation. The sender’s contact details are at the top right, and those of your recipient is left-justified below. Write down the place and date of your letter a few lines down. Another paragraph is followed by the subject.
The actual text of your letter of resignation begins with addressing the right contact person. Now you inform us that and at what time you will terminate the existing employment relationship. You can give reasons for the termination, but you don’t have to. Even in the case of an extraordinary termination without notice, you are not forced to disclose your motives. However, in this case, the employer is entitled to know why you are quitting. So be prepared to share this later.
After you have formulated your intention to terminate, you can thank your employer for the cooperation. At this point, you can also ask for a qualified job reference and/or confirmation of receipt. If you have any other requests, please state them here. Now the greeting and your personal signature follow.
Letter of termination from the employer: When is it effective?
You have received a letter of resignation from your employer and you are not sure whether it is even effective? Formal errors can make the termination ineffective and ensure that the employment relationship (for the time being) remains. In any case, the employer must notify the termination in writing. He must keep the notice period.
Reasons for the termination do not have to be stated in the actual letter of termination. However, you have a right to know the motives of the employer. He can tell you later. The employer must only state the reason for the termination in the notice of termination if this is provided for by individual law, collective law, or by law. The termination must in any case be socially justified with a valid reason for termination. It must not violate legal regulations and must be the last resort.
Termination can only be effective if the employee concerned can be properly terminated at all. This is not the case, for example, during maternity leave, parental leave, or with members of the works council. If there is a works council in the company, it must be heard before the termination. In individual cases, further involvement of the works council can be provided – for example, if a works council is to be terminated. The works council must then not only be heard but also give its approval.