Resignation template

Poor pay, lousy mood in the office, an unpleasant boss or simply a new challenge – there are many reasons for quitting your job. You have decided to take the step of giving notice to your employer? Then you should make sure to hand in a letter of termination without any formal errors, so that it is also legally effective. There are some important points to consider. You can find out everything you need to know here – including two different templates you can use for your notice of termination.

Termination template: facilitated man

The notice of termination – the most important things at a glance:

In principle, an employment contract can also be concluded verbally. With the notice of termination, however, it requires in any case the Written form. Legally, this means that a hand-signed letter is required. So an e-mail, fax or text message is not sufficient! This also means, of course, that a verbal termination is not valid. So, if you have already had a conversation with your supervisor or boss, making it clear that you are leaving the company, you should submit your written resignation as soon as possible.

The Termination statement in your letter must unambiguously be, but you do not have to give a reason for your dismissal.

For this we have two Templates prepared for you, which you can type or download directly as a document. You can use the first sample if you do not want to formulate more text than necessary. The second template is a little more detailed and friendly, because there is also added small paragraph thanking you for the good cooperation and by formulating the request for a job reference.

Termination template 1: short form

For a letter of notice you need basically not many words. If you want to give a Template If you would like to have a notice of termination that is as simple as possible, you can use this copy:

Termination template short form

Termination template 2: Detailed

This sample below is worded a bit more broadly. Optionally here could also be a reason for Notice of termination must be indicated, however, in principle this is not necessary with the notice as an employee. This template can also serve as inspiration for you to draft your own resignation letter.

Resignation template

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Termination letter: These are the legal requirements:

In the case of a termination in due time, there are some requirements (§623 BGB) to be observed in order to make it legally effective:

  • Notice must always be given in writing (no email, fax, text message, etc.).)
  • The letter of termination must be signed by hand
  • The contract must be terminated taking into account your notice period. You will find these in your employment contract or – if applicable to you – in the collective bargaining agreement. However, many employers follow the statutory deadlines.

The legal notice periods:

If the employment or collective agreement does not specify other deadlines for you, the law provides the following notice period:

Legal notice periods chart

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When is my notice of termination considered delivered??

The notice of termination applies to a Present person Versus as delivered as soon as the personal delivery has taken place. In the case of a absent person, as soon as the notice comes into the so-called "sphere of influence" of the recipient. That is, not from the day of the actual reading of the notice, but at the time when the recipient receives the Possibility Has to read the notice. When the reader actually takes note of the notice is not relevant.

Notice of termination by mail – when does the notice period start??

When giving notice by mail, there is more to know and to consider than it might seem at first glance. First of all, the notice of termination is also considered delivered when the notice of termination has reached the "sphere of power" of the addressee. That is, from the day on which the notice is posted in the employer’s mailbox. Here again even the time of delivery is important. This is because the letter is considered delivered for the day if it was posted by a time the recipient could still expect to receive it by mail. Let’s make this more clear with an example:

If the termination letter is received by Thursday afternoon, Thursday counts as the day of delivery. In the case of a delivery on Thursday evening, however, again the Friday. If the delivery takes place on a Saturday evening, even Monday is considered the day of delivery – in the case of a public holiday, the next working day.

Termination by mail – the problem with the burden of proof!

However, this creates a big problem for you as an employee when the termination becomes a dispute and ends up in court: How can you prove when the notice of termination was served? In such a case it can play a big role on which day (and even at which time of day) the letter was delivered. The terminating party bears the burden of proof for the receipt of the notice in the case of dispute.

In the case of termination by normal mail, this is precisely a problem. Because you do not have any proof if and when the application was actually delivered. What are the better alternatives?

You can find more infographics at Statista

Registered mail and certified mail with return receipt:

So, sending the letter of termination by registered mail solves these problems? In the case of a registered letter, the letter carrier will leave the registered letter even if the recipient cannot be found. The proof of delivery issued here is an indication of receipt of the notice, but is not proof in court. So, in case of litigation, there still has to be a hearing of evidence in which it could come out that the delivery procedure of the bailiff was not carried out properly.

Unfortunately, even registered mail with return receipt is not a better solution. If the recipient is not available, the notification slip can be placed in the mailbox, but the letter with the termination notice must be picked up at the nearest post office. The notice has therefore not landed in the "sphere of influence" of the recipient – and that the recipient picks up the notice promptly (or at all) at the post office is not guaranteed.

Delivery of the notice by a bailiff:

A secure solution is the delivery of the notice by a bailiff. For this purpose, the person giving notice must hand over the letter of termination to be delivered (in the original) to the bailiff. It can also be mailed with the request to deliver the document to the recipient. The bailiff will then hand over a certified copy to the employer. Even if the recipient cannot be found, the bailiff has the option of handing over the letter to another suitable person or posting it in the letterbox and issuing you with a certificate of service for this purpose. In addition, the bailiff can be called in as a witness.

You can find a bailiff responsible for you by doing a quick search on Google or by calling the responsible distribution office. The costs amount to about 15 – 35 €, depending on the distance of the bailiff.

Delivering the notice in person:

Even if it is no fun and costs a lot of effort: The most uncomplicated and safest way to give notice is to hand it in personally. Here you should have the receipt of the termination confirmed in writing and, in the best case, have a colleague at your side who can witness the termination. This way you do not waste time sending the letter of resignation by mail or via the bailiff.

Termination as an employee – this is the right way to talk to your boss:

You want to give notice to your employer now? Most of the time you will not be able to avoid a personal interview. As we have just learned, this is usually also the right step to take. You now know the legal regulations that you have to observe. However, such a resignation is a sensitive issue and even if the scarf between you and your superior has long since been cut, it is always advisable to find an appropriate way for both parties to deal with the situation. Also because in the event of a dispute, the boss always has the upper hand in the end and you want to have a fair and good reference handed over to you.

You should pay attention to this if you value a clean and fair separation:

  • Seek a personal meeting in a suitable setting. So, not in a stressful situation or "between door and door".
  • Don’t delay your cancellation until the last possible day. With a notice period of often four weeks, there is not much time to organize a suitable replacement for you. Therefore, it is a good idea to give your boss a little more time to find a suitable successor.
  • Stay factual! Even if you are angry with your employer – a resignation is not a personal reckoning with your boss. So be careful not to let your emotions guide you too much.
  • Keep doing your job: during the time you are still employed by your employer, your performance should not drop significantly. Taking sick leave for the last few weeks is also widespread today, but does not leave a good impression – especially with regard to your qualified job reference.

What happens to my vacation days?

In principle, you are entitled to use up your vacation days as long as you are still with the company. However, there must be a distinction between two cases:

1. You leave the company in the first half of the year:

Here you are entitled to the proportionate number of vacation days. That is, if you terminate your company on 31. If you leave the company on March 1, you are entitled to 3/12 of your annual vacation.

2. You leave the company in the second half of the year:

In this case, you’re entitled to use up all your annual leave – as much as you still can. However, only if you have already been employed by the company for more than 6 months (so-called. Waiting period). If you have been with the company for less than half a year, you are also only entitled to the pro-rated vacation (see 1. Case).

Can I also have my vacation paid out?

Here the widespread myth prevails that vacation can be paid out in any case. Basically, however, it is legally regulated that the vacation to which you are contractually entitled must also be taken. This may only be paid out if it is no longer possible in terms of time to use up all vacation days. So if you want to take your vacation, you can insist on your right to use it up before the end of the employment relationship.

But you should also know that in practice it is often handled differently. Even though the Federal Vacation Act actually prohibits it, vacation is often paid out instead of used up. Legally, this is not correct – however, it is usually tolerated.

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