Optional withdrawal of dissolution petition
Should the Sub District Court have the authority to enable the withdrawal of a dissolution petition for reasons of the intended awarding of a transition allowance? A particular employee begged to differ, and on appeal argued that the law permitted the withdrawal of the dissolution petition only in conjunction with the intended awarding of fair compensation rather than that of a transition allowance.
The Sub District Court in question in the case at hand, quoting the “breakdown in the working relationship”, had provisionally dissolved the employment contract with an employee who had been rendered unfit for work more than two years earlier, whom it had awarded a transition allowance in the amount of 74,312 euros on actual dissolution of the contract. As the employer had requested that the employment contract be dissolved without a transition allowance being awarded, not surprisingly it went on to avail itself of the option of withdrawing its dissolution petition.
According to the Bois-le-Duc Court of Appeal, it would be appropriate for a Sub District Court in so far as it intended to award fair compensation to enable a petitioner to withdraw. Prevailing legislation, so the Court of Appeal argued, did not stop the Sub District Court enabling the withdrawal of the petition where there was no intention on the latter Court’s part to award fair compensation. Withdrawal was not statutorily prohibited, nor did withdrawal statutorily depend on the consent of the party of the other part. According to the Court of Appeal, the Sub District Court had had ample reason and cause to arrive at its provisional ruling, it not being unreasonable for an employer in the scenario of a dormant employment contract in the wake of two years of occupational disability on the part of the employee to prefer prolonging said contract to get out of paying a transition allowance.
Dutch version: Mogelijkheid intrekking ontbindingsverzoek