Leaving without Notice

At the end of the first month the contract may be determined, provided notice is given by either side at or before the end of the first fortnight of the service. This also is based on custom, and has been approved by Judges of the Kings Bench Division. Although a servant break the contract by leaving without giving notice, the wages accrued due must be paid, but the master may have a cross claim against the servant for damages for breach of contract. A domestic servant paid weekly is nevertheless entitled to a months notice.

Leading writers in this branch of the law have found it difficult to define exactly what the term domestic servant means but some help is given by the following definition adopted by a judge of the High Court: Domestic servants are servants whose main or general function it is to be about their employers persons or establishments residential or quasi-residential, for the purpose of ministering to their employers personal or ordinary needs or wants, or to the needs or wants of those who are members of such establishments, including guests.

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