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Just because Nomsa absconded doesn't mean you don't have to pay her

by , 09 January 2015
Your employee, Nomsa, doesn't pitch up for work for three weeks. And she doesn't call you to explain why she's absent.

So, you investigate and deem this a case of abscontion. You then follow all the legal procedures for dealing with absconding employees and dismiss her.

Case closed, right?

Not so fast.

You must pay Nomsa whatever you owe her first before you close the matter.

That's right.

Just because she's absconded doesn't mean you don't have to pay her.

Read on to find out more about this so you fully comply with labour law when dealing with absconding employees like Nomsa.


Even though she's absconded, you must pay Nomsa what you owe her

 
Experts behind AWOL! Your guide to dealing with employees who abscond say you must pay your employee any amounts due to her. This includes her monthly salary, any incentives or bonuses she would've otherwise received, outstanding leave pay, overtime pay, etc.
 
Although in terms of labour law, the principle of 'no work, no pay' applies to the period of unauthorised absence. This means you don't have to remunerate Nomsa for the time she wasn't at work, you just need to make all outstanding statutory payments you owe her.

 
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The abscondment solution you've been waiting for

AWOL! Your guide to dealing with employees who abscond is a step-by-step guide on the process you need to follow to make sure you deal with absconded employees correctly and effectively.
 
With it, you can confidently deal with absconding employees while protecting yourself and your company from an unfair dismissal case.

Click here to find more…
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But what happens if the absconding employee owes you money?


When you make your calculation, take into account any unpaid staff, education or other company loans or advances you made to your employee before she deserted.
 
Note you can only do this if your employee gives you permission, in writing.
 
For any other amounts your employee owes you, you have to institute a civil claim to recover these. You can't set these off against the amounts you owe your employee.
 
The experts say from a practical point of view, it'd be better for you to write off the debt.
 
'The chances of recovering the money are slim considering you first have to locate your former employee. And then bring a civil claim against her in the Small Claims Court if the amount is under R12 000 or the Magistrates' Court.'
 
And 'even if you manage to get a judgement against your employee, there may be little or no satisfaction in enforcing execution due to your employee's lack of assets,' they add.
 

It's crucial you deal with absconding employees effectively

 
If you don't, you'll open your company to costly legal disputes.
 
Don't take any chances.
 
Now that you know you must pay your absconding employee whatever you owe her, comply.
 
PS: Because dealing with absconding employees is anything but clear-cut, we recommend you get your hands on AWOL! Your guide to dealing with employees who abscond.
 
It's a step-by-step guide on the process you need to follow to make sure you deal with absconded employees correctly and effectively. With it, you can confidently deal with absconding employees while protecting yourself and your company from an unfair dismissal case.
 


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