Casual employee is one who is hired on occasional or temporary basis on an as-needed basis or to meet the employer’s staffing needs during periods of unusual circumstances, like when the business is at its peak or when the company has to meet the chain of supply and demand. Casual employees perform jobs not directly related or desirable to the business of the employer. Otherwise, the law will deem these employees regular employees.
The labor laws of the Philippines do not explicitly state a definition of a casual employee. However, according to the authorities, a casual employee is an employee who is engaged to perform an activity not usually necessary or desirable to the course of business of the employer or merely incidental to the business and is hired under the terms of casual employment and for a definite period only. As a casual employee, they are devoid of security of tenure.
When can a casual employee become a regular employee
For example, a mechanic who is hired from time to time to fix the machinery in a manufacturing company is a casual employee. A painter in a realty company who was hired to repaint the company building is a casual employee. Mechanical jobs are not directly related to the usual course of business of a realty company. Work of a painter is not usually necessary to the business of a realty company. Nevertheless, if these casual employees have rendered their services for at least a year, whether continuous or intermittent, may ask for a right of regular employment with respect to the work or activity for which these employees were employed. If regularized, they cannot be terminated without valid cause.
As a casual employee, they are devoid of security of tenure, thus, can be terminated even when the work has not yet been finished and even without a cause. They do not enjoy benefits provided by law to those regular employees. Usually, they work fewer hours than regular employees. Corollary, they receive lesser wages or salary. In addition, benefits guaranteed by law to regular employees are absent when one is a casual employee like leave credits, holiday pay, health care, etc.
Necessity of a Lawyer
In determining what kind of employee you are, always base your analysis on the definition of a regular employee under Article 280 of the Labor Code of the Philippines. If you think your circumstance as an employee is inconsistent with the legal description of a regular employee, then you may be either a casual, project or contractual employee. Each is distinct from the other. Sometimes, you may get confused which of the kind of employment you belong. In such a case, the understanding of a lawyer may help especially if you want to claim benefits you think would be right for you.