Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Friday January 25th 2019

Finance manager earning $5000/month facing unfair dismissal and feeling lost

Dear Gilbert,

First of all, I have to thank you for setting up this website that gives hope in life.

The staff at the company I’m working at informed me via a teleconference that I am to be immediately terminated.

I was given two letters. One, my resignation letter and the other, a termination letter.

The reason was spelled out as follow:

1) I am not fit to be a finance manager and I have not fulfilled my duty.  I have not given sufficient information to my immediate superior for decision making in business.

2) I am not respectable enough to be the leader of Southeast Asia (Company director)

They are offering me a 3-month ex gratia. And I am required to sign the letter immediately.

They are also giving me garden leave until 30/4.

I refused to sign it and am requesting to seek for other advice.

They have locked my computer password on Monday afternoon.

They are basically making me feel redundant.

I have joined this company as part-time accountant for the past few years.

I became one of the official staff  as an associate finance manager later.

I was promoted as a finance manager just few years back.

I worked long hours every day (at least 12 hours), assuming  the role of one-man show since the day I joined the Company and has worked beyond my scope.

I only have one new staff reporting to me.

I am asking for one-year salary compensation for my past three years of long working hours for the company.

I am seeking your advice on this matter.

Can the company simply hand me a letter to fire me?

There is no clear reason why I’m fired.

1) There is no prior information notice about me not meeting my expectations.

2) There is no discipline meeting session prior to their decision, which other employees experienced before in our Company.

My position is a finance manager and my monthly salary is SGD $5,000.

I look forward to hearing your your advice and the opportunity to meet you face-to-face.

I would like to know whether I am in the right position to claim and protest.

I am feeling very negative and depressed.

I would like to solve this matter as soon as possible.


Editor’s note: We are trying to assist Alan to the best of our abilities. Note  that MOM could not help on such matter of unfair dismissal and many PMETs are advised to seek their own legal support.

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4 Responses to “Finance manager earning $5000/month facing unfair dismissal and feeling lost”

  1. sal says:

    Hi Alan, sorry to hear the news…. The problems in Spore scenario, no companies have been sued or taken to task by the Authority when they did something wrong. And no law firm want to take your case to the court with clause that if you lost the case you would not pay anything. Hope future party that gov the city will implement policies that protect workers rights.

  2. xyz says:

    S’pore courts don’t allow no-win-no-pay lawyers. Hence in pro-business s’pore it’s very very difficult for the small guys to get justice against the big guys.

    Another thing about S’pore courts — everything is based on s’pore version of contract law. There is no worker’s rights or human rights. The Court will go with what is written down in the employment contract.

    S’pore laws allow companies to simply fire workers without having to give any reason at all. Yes this is legal in s’pore.

    If you want to waste money going to court, you can be sure that the company will create a history of lousy performance, bad attitude in your HR records.

  3. xyz says:

    Oh BTW, there have been 2 or 3 banks / financial firms being successfully sued by ex-employees for compensation. But these ex-employees are all very highly-paid foreigners and on full expat-contracts with golden handshake clause in their contracts (even if they are fired for whatever reason).

    When those banks / financial firms didn’t pay the golden handshake, the foreigners took the companies to court. And S’pore judge actually awarded damages to the foreigners. Becoz S’pore goes by black & white contract law.

    One of those joker foreigner worked at a bank for only ONE DAY. He got fired for aggressive behaviour, shouting at managing director, directors, bang table, kick chairs, kick glass doors etc. AND S’PORE COURT AWARDED HIM TENS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS AS COMPENSATION FOR BEING FIRED. True story. Even got reported in Bloomberg.

    Haha that’s the joke on Sinkies right?!?

  4. Marcus Lim says:

    Dear Alan,

    If you have been dismissed without any specific reasons, then it is your legal right to sue them (unless you are serving your probationary period). The courts will usually view such cases in your favor if you have been dismissed unfairly and/or arbitrarily. The general rule is for employer to serve notices – at least one must be in writing while the other two should be either verbally repromanded or in writing.

    If they have not done so, sent them a letter seeking for explanation. If they refused to reply, send them another letter where you will then seek compensation for an amount that should include your potential loss of income, duress and any amount determined by the court. YOU DO NOT NEED A LAWYER TO SUE THE EMPLOYER. Do not be afraid, go to the subordinate court (now called State Court), there is an administration office at the ground floor. Tell them that you want the documents to file a suit and they will guide you on the processes. If the matter goes to trial, you do not need to worry because the Judge will guide you on your action and other administrative matters. It simple, trust me.

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