Termination Of Employment

Time to say Goodbye hanging sign boardTermination Of Employment In Singapore

Either you or your employer can end an employment relationship by terminating the contract of service. Find out the guidelines for termination with or without notice and termination due to misconduct including appeal against wrongful dismissal.

What is termination

Termination with notice

Termination without notice

Termination due to employee misconduct

Appeal against wrongful dismissal


FAQ on Termination

Can a contract of service be ended before the notice period is up?

Yes, either employer or employee can terminate the contract before the notice period has ended.

However, they have to pay the other party salary in lieu of notice (‘notice pay’). This should be equivalent to the salary the employee would have earned during the remainder of the notice period.

Can an employer ask an employee to leave without serving their notice period?

Yes, but the employer has to pay their employee salary in lieu of notice (‘notice pay’). This is money equivalent to the salary that the employee would have earned during the required notice period.

Can an employer reject an employee’s resignation?

No. Under the Employment Act, employees have the right to resign at any time, by serving notice or by compensating the employer with salary in lieu.

It is an offence for employers to disallow employees to leave their job.

Can an employer withhold an employee’s final salary payment if the employee leaves without a proper handover?

Your employer cannot withhold your final salary if you have served your notice period.

The notice period gives both parties time to plan for a smooth transition, including handover arrangements. As a responsible employee, you should also play your part by completing your duties before leaving employment.

Can a term contract employee resign before their contract expires?

Yes, any employee can resign at any time, as long as they serve the notice stated in their contract.

Can I extend my employee’s notice period if I need them to complete a project before they leave?

You should discuss and mutually agree with your employee on the extension of notice period.

If there is no mutual agreement, your employee’s notice period will be the duration stated in the contract.

Can I resign after my maternity leave?

Yes. If you decide not to continue working after your maternity leave, you can resign and serve the appropriate notice, or compensate your employer with salary in-lieu of notice.

Your resignation will not affect your entitlement to maternity leave.

Can I resign on a non-working day?


However, MOM encourages you to resign on a working day while at work so as to ensure that your employer received and acknowledged your resignation.

Can I terminate employment at the end of a probation period?

Yes, either employer or employee can terminate the employment at the end of the probation period.

This can be done by:

  • Serving the required notice period stated in contract or mutual agreement with the company; OR
  • Compensate the other party with salary in lieu.
What is my notice period during probation and upon confirmation?

You should check your employment contract on the terms governing notice period during probation and after confirmation.

If your employment contract didn’t state a different notice period for employees on probation, your notice period would be the same during your probation and after your confirmation.

If you’re not sure of your notice period or employment status, you should check with your employer or your HR department.

Can the notice period be different for employer and employee?

No. The notice period should be the same for both employer and employee.

If this isn’t the case in the contract, or if a notice period wasn’t agreed upon, then the employee’s notice period should be based on these guidelines.

If an employee applies for unpaid leave while serving their notice, can the employer extend the notice period?

The notice period gives you and your employer time to plan for a smooth handover and transition. Both parties should agree on how you will spend this period, including planning leave and work duties.

If you apply for leave during your notice period, your notice period remains the same, unless both you and your employer agree otherwise.

If I am an employer and my employee resigns, do I need to sign his resignation letter? What if I am the employee?

Having the other party acknowledge receipt of the termination notice helps prevent misunderstandings or disputes.

If you are the employer: You are encouraged to get your employee to sign the termination notice.

If you are the employee: You are encouraged to get your employer to sign your resignation letter.

If I am a union member who has been unfairly dismissed by my company, can I submit an appeal?

Yes, you should approach your union for assistance.

Your union can submit an appeal to the Minister of Manpower on your behalf, under Section 35 of the Industrial Relations Act, within 1 month of your dismissal.

If I resign without serving required notice, when must my employer pay my final salary?

Your employer must pay you your salary within 7 days of your last day of employment.

If your employer did not pay you your salary, you can contact TADM to file a claim.

If I signed a fixed-term contract and my contract expires, do I have to serve any notice to terminate the employment?

No. If the contract is a fixed term contract, it would terminate automatically upon the expiry of the contract.

However, you may need to if there is a termination clause requiring either party to give advance notice to terminate or renew the contract.

If I signed a fixed-term contract, is notice needed to terminate my employment before the contract expires?

Yes. If either you or your employer wants to end the employment relationship before the last day of the contract, the terminating party must give notice of termination.

If my employer’s company is closing down, am I entitled to any compensation?

As the amount of retrenchment benefits is not set by law, you should check your employment contract or collective agreement (for unionised companies) for retrenchment benefits or compensation.

If you are facing retrenchment and need support, you can tap on WSG’s Adapt and Grow initiative for job matching and career services.

Is a termination letter always required?

The decision to terminate employment has a significant impact on the employee and the company.

Any notice of termination of employment, either by employer or employee, must be in writing. The party initiating the termination of employment should provide an official letter to clearly communicate their decision.

The letter should include key information such as:

  • Date of termination of employment.
  • Last day of employment.
  • Duration of notice period.

If you did not receive a termination letter, you should request a copy from your employer.

It is good practice to get the termination letter signed or acknowledged. This helps to prevent misunderstandings or disputes.

Is my employer required to give me a reason for terminating my contract?

Termination of employment is a serious matter. It can be an upsetting and emotional time for employees, who will naturally have questions about why they were asked to leave.

In addition to giving due notice, employers are encouraged to explain their reasons for termination so that the employee can better understand the situation and achieve closure.

If your employer has not stated the reason in your termination letter, you can talk to the company’s management or Human Resources department to find out the reason.

If you feel you have been unfairly terminated, you can approach MOM for help.

My employer has not paid, or has only partially paid my salary. Can I leave without serving notice?

Paying salary in a timely manner helps employees to manage their financial needs and commitments.

If you are not paid on time, approach your employer to understand if there are reasons for the late payment, and whether the regular payment schedule can be resumed.

If you are still not paid your full salary within 7 days of it being due, your employer is considered to have breached the terms of employment. You can terminate employment without serving notice, and you should inform your employer of your decision in writing.

You can also file a salary claim at TADM or approach your union for assistance.

My employer wants to change my job duties. Can I resign without serving notice?

Your employer cannot change the terms and conditions of employment without your consent.

If you don’t agree to the changes, you should negotiate with your employer for an agreement acceptable to both.

If there is no agreement, either party can choose to end the contract by serving the notice period as stated in your employment contract.

Should a notice period be measured in calendar days or months?

The length of notice period can be expressed in days, weeks or months.

The notice period refers to the calendar period and includes non-working days and public holidays.

What are some possible valid reasons for dismissing an employee for misconduct?

Misconduct is broadly defined as the failure to fulfil the conditions of employment in the contract of service. Examples include theft, dishonesty, disorderly or immoral conduct at work and insubordination.

Learn more about the requirements for termination due to misconduct.

What happens if there is no progress in negotiating an appeal over termination?

The union, employee or company should write to the Commissioner for Labour, and request conciliation assistance under Section 21 of the Industrial Relations Act.

What should i do if I have already resigned, but still have not received my salary?

You should file a claim or book an appointment at TADM.

Employers must pay their employees on time. Salary must be paid within 7 days from the end of each salary period.

If you have resigned and served the required notice, you must be paid on the last day of employment.

What should I do if my employee’s suspension will take more than 1 week but the Commissioner for Labour hasn’t approved the extension?

Without the Commissioner for Labour’s approval, you must do one of the following:

Allow your employee to return to work and restore their full salary.

Place your employee on paid leave.

If you want to extend the suspension period beyond 1 week, you must submit an application to the Commissioner at least 3 working days before the end of the 1-week suspension.

Note: Employers cannot extend the suspension period without approval from the Commissioner.

What should I do if my employer sent me a lawyer’s letter asking for compensation for the short notice served?

If you had a mutual agreement with your employer to waive off the payment for short notice when you tendered your resignation, such a waiver should be done in writing to prevent dispute.

If your employer did not agree to waive your notice period, you must pay them salary in lieu of notice for the duration which you have not served.

If you need help with the employment dispute, you can make an appointment at TADM.

Why does MOM allow the Commissioner for Labour to extend the suspension period for termination due to misconduct?

With the amendment of the Employment Act to cover higher-earning managers and executives, there could be more complex misconduct issues.

Employers may need more time to investigate the alleged misconduct. For example, an inquiry to identify if an individual misused company funds may require accounting forensics.

In such cases, the employer will need to seek approval from the Commissioner for Labour to extend the suspension period beyond 1 week.

Will my last day of employment change if I take sick leave or hospitalisation leave during the notice period?

While you can take sick leave or hospitalisation leave during the notice period, this will not change your last day of employment. You are still considered an employee until the end of your notice period. Your employer is also not allowed to extend your notice period.

The notice period gives you and your employer time to plan for a handover of duties. As a responsible employee, you should work with your employer to ensure a smooth transition.


Source of Information, Guidelines, Compliance, Laws, Rules & Regulations is from the relevant authorities of Singapore
Details of Source Name of Authorities
·         Corporate matters such as Companies, Businesses, etc ·         The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
·         CPF matters ·         CPF Board
·         Fair Employment Practices (FEP) ·         Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices (TAFEP)
·         Immigration matters & Student Passes ·         Immigration Checkpoints Authority (ICA)
·       Taxation and GST ·         The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS)
·         Skills Development Levy (SDL) ·         SkillsFuture Singapore Agency
·         Work Passes,  Leaves, EFMA & EA ·         The Ministry Of Manpower (MOM)


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