Labor Code does not contemplate situations of dismissal or virtual resignation, recalls Ana Isabel Borbón

San José, Jul 20 ( – The lawyer for Actualidad Tributaria, Ana Isabel Borbón, recalls that the Labor Code does not contemplate situations of dismissal or virtual resignation, so the company must contemplate it in its regulations or internal policy in a manner clear, so that it protects them in the event of a labor lawsuit.

Borbón stressed that “as part of the new normal that companies and workers are experiencing, the labor law specialists at Actualidad Tributaria have received many inquiries about the possibility of making the dismissals virtually.”

“Either because many companies have closed their physical offices and sent their collaborators to work from home, or because organizations have also extended their hiring outside the GAM, Human Resources managers have been faced with the need to make layoffs or dismissals through virtual channels, which has generated doubts on the part of those in charge of personnel management, “he said.

For the labor specialist Ana Isabel Borbón, a lawyer for Actualidad Tributaria, employers should always consider the following elements before proceeding with disciplinary actions virtually:

  • A very clear contract for teleworkers: “Many companies sent their people to work at home, but they did not contemplate the changes that had to be made in the contracts and regulations. So, the regulations are still in force for all workers, but the means to carry out any disciplinary action must be clearly indicated and the best thing is that it is through regulations or internal policy created for teleworking. Likewise, contracts must be adjusted so that any action and communication channel is known to all parties and is the official one, ”said Borbón.
  • Establish official communication channels in telework mode: “This goes hand in hand with clear contracts. There must be an official channel of communication at this time, when it is not feasible to see each other face to face to deliver a warning or dismissal. Then, the employer must make it clear by which way they are going to send and receive official communications and the obligation to give confirmation of delivery ”.
  • How to send a dismissal and how the response will be received: The dismissal involves the delivery of a letter and must be in person, through your immediate boss or the person in charge of human resources. “With the new ways of working, it is imperative that companies review their procedures and establish clear rules. If they want to fire or reprimand a person by electronic means, due to the remoteness in which the employee is, they must ensure the way to receive a received response, and in that case, the letter should be signed digitally or in a otherwise it must be sent by certified mail to ensure delivery. What cannot happen is that the collaborator can claim that he did not receive the communication because it is essential to define the delivery date to know from when the statute of limitations begins for the purposes of any claim on labor rights ”, commented the lawyer.

“The physical delivery of a warning or a dismissal remains the safest way for all parties, particularly if no other mechanism has been established previously,” he concluded.

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