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Regular and Casual Employment

Pursuant to Article 280 of the Labor Code of the Philippines (Labor Code), the primary standard that
determines regular employment is the reasonable connection between the particular activity performed by the
employee and the usual business or trade of the employer; the emphasis is on the necessity or desirability of the
employees activity. Thus, when the employee performs activities considered necessary and desirable to the
overall business scheme of the employer, the law regards the employee as regular.
In addition, the Labor Code also considers as regular employment a casual arrangement when the casual
employees engagement has lasted for at least one year, regardless of the engagements continuity. The
controlling test in this arrangement is the length of time during which the employee is engaged. (See Universal
Robina v. Acibo, G.R. No. 186439, 15 January 2014)
Project Employment
Project employment contemplates an arrangement whereby the employment has been fixed for a specific
project or undertaking whose completion or termination has been determined at the time of the engagement of
the employee. (Article 280, Labor Code of the Philippines)
Since the employees services are coterminous with the project, the services of the project employees are legally
and automatically terminated upon the end or completion of the project.
Seasonal Employment
Seasonal employment applies where the work or service to be performed is seasonal in nature and the
employment is for the duration of the season. (Article 280, Labor Code of the Philippines)
Season employees may also be considered regular employees, thus: [f]arm workers generally fall under the
definition of seasonal employees. We have consistently held that seasonal employees may be considered as
regular employees. Regular seasonal employees are those called to work from time to time. The nature of their
relationship with the employer is such that during the off-season, they are temporarily laid off; but reemployed
during the summer season or when their services may be needed. They are in regular employment because of
the nature of their job,and not because of the length of time they have worked. (Gapayao v. Fulo, et al., G.R.
No. 193493, 13 June 2013)
Fixed-Term Employment
Fixed-term employment is valid when: (a) the fixed period of employment was knowingly and voluntarily
agreed upon by the employer and employee without any force, duress, or improper pressure being brought to
bear upon the employee and absent any other circumstances vitiating his consent; or (b) it satisfactorily appears
that the employer and the employee dealt with each other on more or less equal terms with no moral dominance
exercised by the former or the latter. (See Caparoso, et al. v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 155505, 15 February
Probationary Employment
Probationary employment exists when the employee, upon his engagement is made to undergo a trial period
where the employee determines his fitness to qualify for regular employment, based on reasonable standards
made known to him at the time of engagement. The employer shall make known to the employee the standards
under which he will qualify as a regular employee at the time of his engagement. Where no standards are made
known to the employee at that time, he shall be deemed a regular employee. (See Section 6(d), Implementing
Rules of Book VI, Rule VII-A of the Labor Code)
Generally, probationary employment shall not exceed six (6) months from the date the employee started
working. (See Article 281, Labor Code)