I am an employee of a private company for last 26 years. My age is 57 years. Recently, because of some internal issues, my employer wants to force me for an 'early retirement'. In this situation, my query is whether they can do that? What are my legally available options regarding this matter?
Md. Azizul Huq
After reading your queries, it seems that you are keen to know whether your employer can forcefully compel you to retire and what are your legal standings in this matter.
At the very outset of the answer, it is important to decide whether you are a worker or not as the advice will progress accordingly.
It is appeared from your query that you are an employee of a private company in which case matters related to employment in the country are governed by the Bangladesh Labour Act (BLA) of 2006 and its subsequent amendments together with Bangladesh Labour Rules (BLR) of 2015. BLA 2006 applies to the employees who fall under the definition of worker provided in BLA. Employees who do not fall within the definition of worker, will act in accordance with the terms of their individual employment contract. We shall proceed further presuming that local labour laws will be applicable in your case.
Retirement is defined in section 2(1) of BLA as the normal termination of employment of a worker on attaining the particular age under section 28 of this act. Furthermore, section 28 of BLA provides that an employee shall retire from employment on the completion of 60 (sixty) years of age and that the employer may employ the retiring employee later on, under a contract, provided that both the parties are willing to enter into the contract. If the employee reaches the age of 60 (sixty), retirement shall be automatic by the operation of law pursuant to section 28 of BLA. In your case, your current age is 57 years. Therefore, you are entitled to continue your employment till your age is 60 years and as per law, your employer cannot force you to retire before the age of 60 years.
It is imperative to mention here that, according to section 28(2) of the BLA, your age will be counted in accordance with the date of birth recorded in the service book.
Furthermore, as per section 2(1) of BLA, voluntary retirement by an employee from service on completion of 25 years of service in any establishment shall also be deemed to be retirement. However, this is at the discretion of the employee. Your service age is 26 years. As you have crossed 25 years in your service, thus, you can voluntarily retire from your job with full retirement benefits. But, your employer cannot force you to do the same.
I hope that the abovementioned discussion regarding retirement in the light of BLA has answered your queries and will help you to find a solution to your problem.
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