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Temporary and fixed term contracts

It is essential that there are transparent and objective reasons for agreeing that a post is of a fixed-term/temporary nature as opposed to being permanent.

A temporary or fixed term contract could be established for the following reasons:

  • completion of a specific task, such as project work that is dependent on external funding and the post will end once the funding ceases or no further funding can be found.
  • The completion of a specific task which is then completed.
  • Recruited to provide additional staffing and the provision of services reduces or ceases.

In such cases, the reason for dismissal will be redundancy.

Examples of when a fixed term or temporary contract will be issued where the reason for the dismissal will be for “some other substantial reason”

  • Cover for adoption/maternity/parental leave
  • Cover for secondment of substantive post holder.
  • Cover for a vacancy whilst recruitment process is undertaken (only for approved vacancies)
  • Cover for long-term absence e.g. sickness

In such cases, you would not normally eligible to receive a redundancy payment. Temporary or fixed term contracts should only be used for approved vacancies; these contracts should not be used to cover for a post which is awaiting approval/funding.

If you are on a fixed term/temporary contract you should not expect your employment to last longer than the term of the first contract. Should the contract be ended early i.e. before the contracted length of time then a dismissal will occur and the relevant notice period will apply.

Page updated: 26/03/2018 09:28:48