In Israel, labor court rules on employee termination are stringent. Without prior warning, an employer is not permitted to terminate an employee. Employers must send an invitation letter to the employee inviting him to a hearing. The letter must include the reasons for considering terminating the employee's employment as well as information of the grievances. Employers are expected to give employees at least two days to prepare (weekends and holidays are not included). The employee has the right to represent himself or to have a lawyer or other representative appear on his or her behalf at the hearing.
During the hearing, the employer should limit his or her remarks to the arguments included in the invitation and must give the employee an opportunity to respond. Before reaching a final decision to terminate the employee, the employer must listen to and examine the employee's counterclaims. Additionally, the hearing must be documented, and a copy must be delivered to the employee upon request.
Once the employee has concluded his or her points, the hearing is concluded, and the person conducting the hearing informs the employee that the employer will now examine what the employee has said and will make a decision regarding the employee. Employers are not permitted to deliver any decision immediately following the conclusion of the hearing session or during the hearing session itself.
Employers may not quickly dismiss an employee following a hearing, but must allow sufficient time to ponder and examine the employee's argument as stated at the hearing.
A decision should be communicated to the employee (ideally in person) within a reasonable time of the hearing date (while taking in consideration the scope of the employees claims as were raised during the hearing). The decision should be in writing and should include a reference to the employee's arguments and the company's response to them at the hearing session.
If the termination process is not carried out correctly, a labor court may have the employee reinstated or compensated by the employer.
If the employer decides to fire the employee after the hearing, the company must give the employee written notice with the date of dismissal. For each month of employment within the first six months, one day of notice is accrued. From the sixth month through the conclusion of the first year, 2.5 days of notice are accumulated in addition to the 6 days accumulated. Termination beyond the first year needs a 30-day notice.
The employer is required to make monthly contributions to the severance pay component equal to 8.33 percent of the employee's monthly salary payment. The accrued amount is to be released to the employee upon termination, even if the employee resigns without the occurrence of circumstances that would entitle them to severance pay. The amount of severance pay is determined by the employee's length of service. Severance is paid at the rate of one month's salary for each year worked. If the employer contributes 8.33 percent to severance pay on a monthly basis, he will avoid having to pay severance in the event of termination.
There is no statutory probationary period in Israel.