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Leave on Grounds of Force Majeure


I am a citizen of a third country, working in Cyprus on a contract basis in an
international company. By force majeure I need to go home and it is still unknown
how much I’ll be missing. Is there any maximum period of absence, established by
law, after which the company can fire me? What do I need to do to avoid it?


According to the Parental Leave or Leave on Grounds of Force Majeure Law,
taking this sort of leave is, by no means, a reason to terminate employment and it
does not interrupt the continuity of employment. Termination of employment
during parental leave or leave on grounds of force majeure is only possible in case
of redundancy.

Any employee has the right to take unpaid leave or (force majeure leave) of up to 7
days a year if she / he deals with any family emergencies resulting from the
accidents or illness of a family member, which makes the presence of the
employee indispensable. The force major unpaid leave is given and controlled
according to the Parental Leave and Leave on Grounds of Force Majeure Law of

In case of family emergencies the employee has to inform her / his employer the
soonest possible about the decision of using the force major leave days. The
employer is allowed to offer more favorable terms than the law through collective
agreements or special arrangements with the employee.
An employer cannot fire an employee or give any notice of termination, during the
employee’s period of force major leave. The employer cannot terminate the
employment contract due to any reasons that concern the employees’ force major
unpaid leave. The employers who disregard the provisions of the Parental Leave
and Leave on Grounds of Force Majeure Law of 2012 are guilty of an offense and
can be fined with up to €7.500.

The Parental Leave and Leave on Grounds of Force Majeure Law, Law
47(I)/2012, came into force on the 18.05.2012 and repealed and replaced the
previous legislation regarding parental leave and force majeure in Cyprus.
It is better for you to contact with your employer and to inform him about the
problem you have and maybe your employer understands and gives you more
unpaid leave in order to be with your relatives in your country. The other
option is to use your right for your 7-days unpaid leave as you are entitled and
add some days of your annual leave.