Forced Leave in the Philippines, According to DOLE

Last December, I was put on forced leave for ten days by my employer, together with 15 other colleagues. It was good I had another source of income, otherwise  some of my payables would have not been paid.

Actually, the boss didn’t use the term “forced leave.” And she refuses to call it so. She just explained that the Philippines branch needed to cut costs for the month of December so that the U.S. parent would not close the operations in Makati. Whew! She further said that the U.S. is contemplating consolidating the Philippine operations into a location where costs are lower.

I visited the site of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), but surprisingly I couldn’t find anything on forced leaves. It’s good the site accepts queries. So I sent the following query last December:

Sir/Madam: Does the Labor Code have provisions on forced leaves? I have searched all over the site and inside the Labor Code books/chapters and I can’t find something about forced leaves. Kindly please help me find them. And please email me the links. The only things that I’ve found on the Internet about forced leaves in the Phil. are discussions about it in tsikot.yehey.com forum. And of course, they’re not official views. I like to know if forced leaves are legal, as I was put on forced leave starting today together with about 13 others. We’re regular employees. My manager though doesn’t like to label it as forced leave because we’re not paid by the hour, but by the number of records we write. The managers argued that they need to cut costs for the month of December, which has a lot of holidays. Thanks a lot.

And hooray, the Legal Service of DOLE answered relatively fast!

Dear Ms. Nora:

Work days may be reduced on account of losses. The reduction in the number of regular working days is resorted to by the employer to prevent serious losses due to causes beyond his control, such as when there is a substantial slump in the demand for his goods or services or when there is lack of raw materials.  This is more humane and in keeping with sound business operations than the outright termination of the services or the total closure of the enterprise.

In situations where there is valid reduction of workdays, the employer may deduct the wages and living allowances corresponding the days taken off from the workweek, in the absence of agreement specifically providing that a reduction in the number of workdays will not adversely affect the remuneration of employees.  This view is consistent on the principle of “no-work-no-pay”.  Furthermore, since the reduction of workdays is resorted to as a cost-saving measure, it would be unfair for the employer to pay the wages and living allowances even on unworked days that were taken off from the regular workweek.

Thank you for writing.

Legal Service, DOLE

*Please be advised that this email address will only be used to answer email queries sent through our comments and inquiries section. Kindly send your questions through our comments and inquiries section in www.dole.gov.ph

92 Comments

  1. Rochelle February 14, 2020
  2. Lia January 3, 2020
  3. Jun December 20, 2019
  4. Nora August 26, 2019
  5. Mystery August 22, 2019
  6. Margarita Glor August 22, 2019
  7. Summer19 July 25, 2019
  8. Jerry Lim November 16, 2018
  9. Dan October 21, 2018
  10. Gwen October 21, 2018
  11. Fely temonio June 11, 2018
  12. Fely temonio June 11, 2018
  13. Fely temonio June 11, 2018
  14. pedrito March 27, 2018
  15. Nora February 11, 2018
  16. Pedrito Moran February 9, 2018
  17. goodtomorrow July 29, 2017
  18. Itsapesful June 29, 2017
  19. Vnianz May 16, 2017
  20. jeff. April 26, 2017
  21. jm January 14, 2017
  22. Desi December 24, 2016
  23. Ernest December 12, 2016
  24. Rhea November 21, 2016
  25. Nora October 25, 2016
  26. Claire Bien October 22, 2016
  27. Nora October 1, 2016
  28. Victoria September 29, 2016
  29. Ria May 19, 2016
  30. Ariel April 15, 2016
  31. Irish April 5, 2016
  32. Nora March 11, 2016
  33. Jerome Tenchavez March 11, 2016
  34. Nora January 19, 2016
  35. Nora January 19, 2016
  36. Nora January 19, 2016
  37. Erica Onnagan January 16, 2016
  38. Ana Dorothea Sapitola January 13, 2016
  39. Loren January 12, 2016
  40. Loren January 12, 2016
  41. Arlene January 7, 2016
  42. cho November 5, 2015
  43. Nora October 14, 2015
  44. Nora October 14, 2015
  45. Nora October 14, 2015
  46. Venus S. Yap October 14, 2015
  47. princess October 14, 2015
  48. PAOLO October 1, 2015
  49. Nora August 19, 2015
  50. Lance August 19, 2015
  51. xansux June 23, 2015
  52. Nora May 24, 2015
  53. alex May 20, 2015
  54. Nora April 29, 2015
  55. fritz paterno April 26, 2015
  56. Nora April 24, 2015
  57. danvil April 24, 2015
  58. Nora April 21, 2015
  59. neil April 21, 2015
  60. aime March 14, 2015
  61. Nora March 3, 2015
  62. gary March 2, 2015
  63. Nora February 16, 2015
  64. Robert February 16, 2015
  65. Nora December 22, 2014
  66. jenny December 22, 2014
  67. Nora November 22, 2014
  68. Alex Ram November 19, 2014
  69. raven July 18, 2014
  70. Recca rule July 15, 2014
  71. Nora May 19, 2014
  72. bernadette May 18, 2014
  73. bernadette May 18, 2014
  74. Nora May 6, 2014
  75. Mark Mendoza May 6, 2014
  76. Nora January 3, 2014
  77. kenji January 2, 2014
  78. Nora December 13, 2013
  79. Winnie gamboa December 12, 2013
  80. Nora December 8, 2013
  81. Jenerie December 5, 2013
  82. Nora November 30, 2013
  83. jema November 29, 2013
  84. Nors October 24, 2013
  85. Allan October 24, 2013
  86. Nors August 23, 2013
  87. dennis zamora August 22, 2013
  88. Nors August 12, 2013
  89. Machelle August 12, 2013
  90. jojo April 15, 2013
  91. Nors March 13, 2013
  92. Jhun March 12, 2013

Leave a Reply