Russian Regional Court Admits the Notice on Staff Reduction Sent Via Email
By Ekaterina Kabanova, KBK Accounting
The appeal court of the city of Nizhny Novgorod made an interesting pronouncement, in June 2019, accepting that it is possible to notify an employee about an upcoming dismissal due to staff reduction via email. This court decision appears to be quite uncommon; the current judgement insists on execution of all staff-related documentation on paper and only reluctantly gives weight to materials in other forms and without the “real” signature on it.
With regard to the future dismissal due to the staff reduction procedure, the employer shall notify its employees personally with signed acknowledgement not later than two months before the termination. Proving the compliance of the employer with the legal regulation, the court found that the respective employee was notified in advance about the coming dismissal, via email. The Court pointed out that the form of the future dismissal notification is not fixed by law.
The electronic correspondence between employer and staff was foreseen by the internal labour regulation of the legal entity, as well as in the job description of the employee. The appurtenance of the email address to the concrete employee and the receipt of the notification were determined by the court. The analogic notification was additionally sent to the employee with the post telegram, however, the latter refused to receive it.
Meanwhile, the current judgment of the Russian courts about a termination by the employee’s own wish via email remains unequivocal – i.e. not legally effective without the digital signature of the employee. The employee wanting to terminate his employment has to send the resignation letter via offcial post on paper, or by telegram (with the identity of the sender proven), or via email but with the obligatory digital signature, otherwise, the employer is not able to undertake the termination procedure and release the final settlement with the employee on the respective dismissal ground.
Judicial act: Decision on appeal Nizhny Novgorod regional court dated 04.06.2019 No. 33-5728/2019.
Ekaterina KabanovaGGI member firm
Auditing & Accounting, Tax
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KBK Accounting is a reputable outsourcing firm and provider of a wide range of services, including tax accounting and bookkeeping, tax advisory, reporting and compliance, HR, and interim management.
Ekaterina Kabanova is Head of the corporate department and has over 10 years’ experience in providing legal advice in company restructuring and employment matters.
Published: Labour Law Newsletter, No. 07, Autumn 2019 l Photo: Тищенко Дмитрий - stock.adobe.com