Proposed Changes to Minimum Notice Periods

March 20, 2024

On 11th March 2024, Deputy Andrews introduced a proposition aimed at adjusting the statutory minimum notice periods required for employers to notify employees of the termination of their employment (excluding those under fixed-term contracts). The stated rationale behind Deputy Andrews’ proposal is that the existing statutory minimum notice periods are too short to allow people sufficient notice to make arrangements to manage their affairs properly in the event of the termination of their employment.

Current Position

As per Article 56(1) of the Employment (Jersey) Law 2003, the following minimum notice periods are mandated for employees:

  • Less than 2 years of service: 1 week’s notice;
  • 2 years or more but less than 3: 2 weeks’ notice;
  • 3 years or more but less than 4: 3 weeks’ notice;
  • 4 years or more but less than 5: 4 weeks’ notice;
  • 5 years or more but less than 6: 5 weeks’ notice;
  • 6 years or more but less than 7: 6 weeks’ notice;
  • 7 years or more but less than 8: 7 weeks’ notice;
  • 8 years or more but less than 9: 8 weeks’ notice;
  • 9 years or more but less than 10: 9 weeks’ notice;
  • 10 years or more but less than 11: 10 weeks’ notice;
  • 11 years or more but less than 12: 11 weeks’ notice; and
  • 12 years or more: 12 weeks’ notice.

These align with those in England and Wales.

Proposed Amendments

Deputy Andrews’ proposition suggests the following changes:

  • During the probation period: 1 week’s notice (no change);
  • Less than 1 year (after probation period): 4 weeks’ notice (an increase of three weeks);
  • More than 1 year but less than 4: 4 weeks’ notice (an increase for years one, two, and three, but no change for year four);
  • More than 4 years but less than 8: 8 weeks (an increase for years five, six, and seven, but no change for year eight); and
  • More than 8 years: 12 weeks’ notice (an increase for years nine, ten, and eleven, but no change for year twelve).

The proposition is scheduled for debate on 16th April 2024. If adopted, Deputy Andrews aims for the necessary adjustments to the Employment (Jersey) Law 2003 to be implemented by 1st June 2025.


The adoption of this proposition would bolster the rights of employees under contracts that adhere to these prescribed minimum notice periods. It’s important to note that the proposition does not seek to restrict contracts of employment from imposing longer notice periods – where the contract of employment provides for a longer notice period than the statutory minimum it is the contractual notice period which will apply. Neither does the proposal modify the existing rules on the notice which employee’s must give to their employer when terminating their employment. There are also exceptions which already apply to minimum notice periods, such as where an employee is dismissed for gross misconduct.

The proposed 1 week notice for employees during their probation period could potentially be exploited. Prolonging probationary periods to maintain the 1-week notice could become a loophole, permitting an employer to limit an employee’s notice period to one week for up to a year. Plainly there are circumstances in which a probation period will be justifiably extended. However, given the potential for this to be exploited, it may be sensible to amend the proposal to provide that any employee, irrespective of whether they are on probation or not, should be given one week’s notice if they have less than 26 weeks’ service, and 4 weeks’ notice if they have more than 26 weeks’ service but less than a year’s service.

In any event, this would be an interesting amendment to the Employment Law and something we will provide an update on, as things progress.

For any employment law queries, please contact our Employment team.

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