Dear Atty. Kathy,
I just won the illegal dismissal case I filed in 2013 against my employer, Company A. In my complaint, I asked for reinstatement to my former position.
However, during the negotiations for settlement so that I will not appeal my case anymore, Company A said since it has been 10 years and my former position no longer exists, they will just give me separation pay equivalent to my latest 1-month salary for every year of service.
Is this justified?
The Supreme Court has ruled that where reinstatement is no longer an option, payment of separation pay is justified. The lapse of 8 years or more, from the filing of the complaint up to the resolution of the case, has been considered by the Court as “considerable time” to support the grant of separation pay in lieu of reinstatement.
In your case, it appears that your reinstatement is an impractical option, considering that 10 years had passed from the time you filed your illegal dismissal complaint in 2013. In such a situation, instead of reinstatement, the Court grants separation pay of one month for every year of service, among other reliefs that a complainant may be entitled to.
Separation pay in lieu of reinstatement would therefore be justified in your case.
(Julieta B. Sta. Ana versus Manila Jockey Club, Inc., G.R. 208459, 15 February 2017).
Atty. Kathy Larios
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