In which case may your former employer be obliged to offer you a job?
According to the Employment Contracts Act, an employer must offer work to an employee who has been dismissed if, within a certain period of time, they need new employees for the same or similar duties as the dismissed employee's duties. However, there are certain conditions attached to the so-called readmission obligation.
In order for your employer to be obliged to readmit a former employee, all these conditions must be met:
- You have been dismissed on TUTA grounds or in connection with a restructuring procedure.
Your employment relationship must have ended with a dismissal on the part of your employer on production or economic grounds or for reasons arising from the restructuring of operations (i.e. the restructuring procedure). For example, if your employment relationship has ended with your own resignation, termination of employment, person-based dismissal or the bankruptcy of the employer, there can be no question of a readmission obligation. If your employment relationship has been fixed-term and ended at the end of the fixed-term period, your employer is not obliged to take back your employment.
- You are registered in the TE Services as a jobseeker in the field where your former employer needs new labour.
You do not need to be an unemployed jobseeker at the TE Office, it is enough that you have registered as a jobseeker with the TE Office. However, if you have been re-employed, your former employer is not obliged to wait for your possible release if he needs new employees quickly.
- Your employment relationship ended no more than 4 or 6 months ago.
The condition of four (4) months is observed if your former employment lasted less than 12 years. If your employment relationship continued for a continuous period of 12 years or more, your former employer has a readmission obligation for a period of six (6) months. It is good to remember that the termination protection agreement in your collective agreement may have agreed on longer readmission obligations than the law – so remember to check this if necessary!
- The job on offer is the same or similar to your previous positions.
A job is considered similar if the tasks are similar to your previous duties and you have the professional skills, education and previous work experience required for the position. The readmission obligation does not require that your former employer is obliged to provide you with additional training.
It is worth remembering that the employer's obligation to offer work to laid-off employees or additional work to part-time employees overrides the employer's obligation to readmit employees who have been made redundant. In addition, the employer is not obliged to readmit if the vacancy is filled by internal transfers or if he uses temporary workers, subcontracting or unpaid interns.
If you meet the above-mentioned conditions, your former employer must primarily offer the job to you, even if there is a more qualified external candidate for the position than you. However, as a former employee, you are not obliged to accept the job offered to you.
If your former employer has not complied with the readmission obligation, a combined member* of the YTK should contact the Lakikaveri legal service phone hotline.
*A combined member is a member of both the YTK Unemployment Fund and the YTK Work life services.