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Possible Termination without Prior Warning - Is it legal?

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fbangizm


Arresto Menor
Hi Attorneys,

I am part of a Wave 1 for a Call Center pioneer account which started sometime in February 2012.

Recently, our company have started issuing Notice to Explain (NTE) Memos to us agents who had attendance issues (lates & absences) covering the month of February up to June. For some, they incurred total of 7-14 lates and 5-9 absences.

Although, most of us argued that we informed our Team Manager of our lates and absences and were approved. However, according to the Memo issued against us, we are already on the stage of Termination of Employment. We also reasoned out that our Managers didn't inform us whatsoever that we are nearing the allowable limit for tardiness or absences.

Our upper management said that our attendance report are generated on a Quarterly basis, hence, we were informed about it just recently along with the issuance of the Memo. This is the first time I heard of such thing in the Call Center / BPO industry.

Is it legal to issue a Memo for Termination without prior verbal or final written warning? If we get terminated from our employment, will it be a legal ground to file a wrongful termination lawsuit?

Will appreciate very much your advice on this matter.

Thanks much!

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attyLLL


moderator
imo, that is too harsh. but you should also check your employee handbook.


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ybjaro


Arresto Menor
Good day!

As a contract of service, I have been with this agency for more than 4 years. Every time our contracts were renewed, a memorandum was issued to seek strong justification from our respective superiors. Before June of this year ended, however, we did not receive any memorandum. We were told verbally to await the approval of the guidelines being prepared.

The guidelines were issued 1st week of July. Our contracts until now remain with our superiors who are trying to edit and revise the terms of reference (TOR).

My questions, Sirs and Mesdames, are the following:
1. What implication does it have since our contracts officially ended on June 30, 2012 and until now we don't have any contract? We have been doing the routinary tasks assigned to us since July 1, 2012. Is it possible that the administration will simply tell us that we are no longer connected with the agency?
2. The TOR was revised by our head only in the middle of this month. She actually revised it without our knowledge or approval. Since a contract is an agreement between both the hiring agency and the person being hired, should it not be proper that we have been consulted if we are amenable to such changes prior to the finalization of the contracts?
3. What effect will it have on me if I refuse to sign the contract wherein the TOR prepared which does not conform to my standards and beliefs is stipulated? Do I have the right to refuse to sign and ask for the proper revisions?
4. Is it correct that the TOR should have been revised with our consent prior to the end of our previous contract, since the current period is under the "renewal" stage?

Thank you very much in advance.

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fbangizm


Arresto Menor
Hi attyLLL,

We did check our Employee Handbook. It states the following:

Section 1. Tardiness – shall be disciplinarily dealt with based on the scheduled penalty defined under light offenses.

Section 3. Unauthorized Absence - shall be disciplinarily dealt with based on the scheduled penalty defined under moderate offenses.

Section 5. Successive Absences Without Official Leave - shall be disciplinarily dealt with based on the scheduled penalty defined under grave offenses.

It also states the following penalties:

Section 1 & 2. Offenses classified as LIGHT and MODERATE:
First Offense - Verbal Warning
Second Offense - First Written Reprimand
Third Offense - Second Written Reprimand
Forth Offense - Final Written Reprimand
Fifth Offense - Employment Dismissal

Section 5. Offenses classified as GRAVE:
First Offense Employment Dismissal

The conflicting part is that NO Warnings whatsoever were issued prior to the issuance of the NTE and the Memo for Termination. What they did was add up all the number of occurrences and referred the sum of all incidents to the Penalty Table.

We somehow feel that due processes were skipped. Please advice since 3 of our colleagues were already served their termination papers. We want to know if the management is railroading and ignoring their own process.

Thanks!

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attyLLL


moderator
i would then argue that you were dismissed illegally, not just procedurally but substantively (meaning the basis is not just)


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Warning and Disclaimer: I am not your lawyer; and you are not my client. With the limitations of an  Internet forum, a thorough review of your concern is not possible. View my comments at YOUR OWN RISK. It is best to actually retain a lawyer for your individual concerns.
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fbangizm


Arresto Menor
attyLLL,

do you offer your services for this kind of cases? we are now looking for a lawyer who will represent us in filing a case with the NLRC.

thanks!

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