The employment of a person based on an indefinite contract may be terminated either by the employer or the employee. In this case, after notification of the termination of employment, the employee would have to work a notice period.

The duration of the notice period depends on the employee’s continuous length of service in the same employment:

  • More than one month and up to six months – one week
  • More than six months and up to two years –   two weeks
  • More than two years and up to four years –   four weeks
  • More than four years and up to seven years – eight weeks
  • More than seven years and up to eight years – nine weeks
  • More than eight years and up to nine years – ten weeks
  • More than nine years and up to ten years –   eleven weeks
  • More than ten years – twelve weeks


In the case of technical, administrative, executive or managerial posts, longer periods may be agreed by the employer and employee. However, if the employment is terminated during its probationary period, only one week notice applies, given that the employee has been in employment for more than one month.

Performance of Work during Notice Period

Notice may be given by the employer to the employee or vice versa. It indicates the intention of the termination of employment. If the employee fails to give notice s/he shall be liable to pay to the employer a sum equal to half the wages that would be payable in respect of the period of notice that is not worked.

Upon receiving notice, the employee may choose to cease performing work on receiving notice from the employer, the employer is obliged to pay the employee a sum equal to half the wages that would be payable in respect of the unexpired period of notice. However, if after giving notice, the employee fails to work during the notice period, s/he will be obliged to pay his/her employer a sum equal to half the wages that would be payable in respect of the unexpired period of notice.

If the employee is not given the chance to work the notice, the employer would be obliged to pay the employee a sum equal to full wages that would be payable in respect of the unexpired period of notice.

Without prejudice to what may be due in respect of notice, the employee is entitled to be paid on a proportional basis according to the period of employment, for all outstanding wages, overtime, leave, bonuses etc, due to him/her as at the date of termination.

Termination of a definite contract

Where there is no justified reason to terminate an employment that is on definite basis, the party who breaches the contract is liable to pay the other party a sum equal to half the full wages that would have accrued had the contract of employment remained in force.

Unjust Termination

An employment can be terminated without notice or obligation to compensate for notice when the length of service is not longer than one month, or when there is a good and sufficient cause (eg. disciplinary action, health reasons etc). An employee who alleges unfair dismissal can lodge a complaint to the Industrial Tribunal within four months from the termination of employment.


Malcolm Mifsud

Founding Partner

Charlene Gauci

Senior Associate


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