Guide to Doing Business
in Suriname

Termination of employment agreements

The Dismissal Permits Act (Wet ontslagvergunning) determines that it is forbidden for an employer to terminate an employment agreement without a dismissal permit from- or on behalf of- the Minister of Labour. The Dismissal Board (Ontslag Commissie) will assess on behalf of the Minister of Labour whether  the requirements for rightful dismissal are fulfilled or not. The Dismissal Board Decree 1986 (Besluit Ontslagcommissie 1986) stipulates that the Dismissal Board is obligated to hear the employer, the employee and if applicable the labour union of which the employee is a member, before taking its decision. In Suriname executives and higher function staff members do not engage in membership of Unions.  When permission is granted by the Dismissal Board, the employer can terminate the employment agreement with due observance of the notice period provided in article 1615i-591 of the Suriname Civil Code and further conditions set by the Board.

A dismissal permit from the Dismissal Board is however not required in the following cases:

  1. when it concerns civil servants who are mentioned in article 1 of the Personnel Act, since their dismissal is subject to the provisions stipulated in the Personnel Act;
  2. when the agreement is terminated by mutual consent. Termination by mutual consent is possible at any time, in which event the employer and the employee freely negotiate the terms and conditions for the termination of the employment agreement;
  3. in case of immediate dismissal. Immediate dismissal is only allowed if there is an urgent reason, justifying an immediate termination of the employment agreement. Such urgent reason and the immediate termination would have to be communicated  to the employee ‘forthwith’ and mandatory reported to the Ministry of Labour/Head of Labour Inspection Department within 4 days for ultimate approval by or on behalf of the Minister of Labour;
  4.  in case of termination during the trial period. During a trial period both parties have the right to terminate the employment agreement with immediate effect;
  5. when the fixed term of the employment agreement that was agreed upon has come to an end; and
  6. in case of (early) retirement or death of the employee.