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Examples of Employee Termination Letters

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People receive termination notices for layoffs, misconduct or elimination of a position. As the reason behind the termination differs, so should the termination letters. Some termination letters require an employer to follow specific legal requirements in anticipation of legal proceedings, while others may be a little more personal.

Sub-Par Performance

Some termination letters issue for sub-par performance. Usually this termination occurs after the employee receives notice of unsatisfactory job performance, and time to correct the problem. When the employee does not improve, an employer gives a termination letter to the employee which details the reasons for termination, steps used to inform the employee of the problem and steps followed to remedy the problem.

Obsolete Position

As the work place transitions, some positions become obsolete. These positions require a different type of termination letter, as it is the employer who is responsible for the end of employment. Let the employee know the reason for the termination is based on elimination of the position. If possible, try to offer an alternate position within the company.


Termination letters for misconduct issue immediately after the misconduct. Include the investigation process and steps taken in a misconduct termination letter. This is helpful if legal proceedings become necessary.


Lay-offs occur with regularity in some professions, such as construction or agriculture. Give the worker the termination letter to enable them to receive unemployment benefits while waiting for rehire. Include the date of termination, that it is a lay-off, and expected rehire date.