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Personal basics

A personal reason attributable to an employee may be a serious breach or neglect of obligations arising from an employment contract or law that have a significant impact on the employment relationship. Dismissal may also be based on a substantial change in the employee’s personal working conditions, due to which the employee is no longer able to cope with his or her duties.

The most common personal grounds for dismissal are neglecting the employee’s work obligation. It may mean neglect of work duties, inadequate care, unauthorised absence or repeated delays.

The grounds for dismissal may also be obvious negligence at work, non-compliance with orders given by the employer, inappropriate behaviour, refusal to work or dishonesty. There must be a serious breach or neglect of obligations that materially affects the employment relationship between the employer and the employee.

The Act also contains a list of factors that cannot be considered an appropriate and weighty reason for terminating an employment relationship. These include the employee’s illness, the employee’s participation in industrial action, the employee’s political, religious or social opinions, and recourse to the legal remedies available to the worker.

However, illness may be grounds for dismissal if the employee’s work ability has decreased substantially and for such a long period of time that the employer cannot reasonably be expected to continue the contractual relationship.

If an employee’s ability to perform his or her work changes so much during the duration of the employment relationship that he or she is no longer able to perform his or her duties, this may be grounds for terminating the employment relationship. Such a situation may arise, for example, when an employee receives a long-term custodial sentence or a driver receives a long driving ban.

Do you need more information about the grounds for dismissal related to your person?

Log in to the OMA+ service and watch the first section of Lakiruutu, which explains warnings and prohibited grounds for termination in more detail.

Education tips on the topic

You can also learn more about the topic in the online working life training library, which is part of your member benefits. To access the courses, you must sign up to the online training library. If you have already taken advantage of your free membership benefit and started using the service, log in and click directly to the trainings from the links below. If you haven’t yet signed up, you can do so in the Webinars and Courses section in the Oma+ service for our members.​​​​​​

Termination of employment