Release, Waiver and Quitclaim: How to Grant the Final Pay of Deceased EmployeeAtty Elvin
Release, Waiver and Quitclaim is an important document to establish the relinquishment by the claimant of the right against the company. In the case of employer-employee relationship, the right mentioned refers to the benefits to which the employee is entitled to.
The rights of the employee accrue in accordance with law. Thus, even if the employee dies, the benefits that have already accrued in his favor may be claimed by his heirs.
The employer is under obligation to release the final salaries and benefits of the deceased workers to his heirs. But the question is to whom and what is the process?
The Labor Code, under Article 105, provides that where the worker has died, in which case, the employer may pay the wages of the deceased worker to the heirs of the latter without the necessity of intestate proceedings.
The claimants, if they are all of age, shall execute an affidavit attesting to their relationship to the deceased and the fact that they are his heirs, to the exclusion of all other persons.
If any of the heirs is a minor, the affidavit shall be executed on his behalf by his natural guardian or next-of-kin. The affidavit shall be presented to the employer who shall make payment through the Secretary of Labor and Employment or his representative. The representative of the Secretary of Labor and Employment shall act as referee in dividing the amount paid among the heirs. The payment of wages under this Article shall absolve the employer of any further liability with respect to the amount paid.
Hence, the employer should only release the benefits of the deceased to the heirs. Who are entitled to inherit from the deceased under the law?
The law on rules on legal or intestate succession provides that in every inheritance, the relative nearest in degree excludes the more distant ones and that the succession to property by heirs pertains first to the direct descending line (Articles 962 and 978, Civil Code).
Collateral relatives can inherit and succeed only to the entire estate of the deceased, if there are no descendants, ascendants, illegitimate children or a surviving spouse (Article 1003, Civil Code).
The company should also protect itself with the execution by the claimant of the Release, Waiver and Quitclaim.
Below is the list of several Release, Waiver and Quitclaim templates pertaining to different situations:
- For a retirable employee who applied for retirement but who died before the release of the last pay and the company advanced some costs. The claimant here is a sole heir.
- View this template here.
- View sample of Affidavit of Sole Heir.
- For an employee who died with claimants consisting of the wife and several children which submitted the Extrajudicial Settlement of Estate.
- View this template here
- View sample of Extrajudicial Settlement of Estate here
- For a claimant of an individual who died on an allegation that he was killed by the contractor of the company (e.g. security guard), or by anyone working for the company, a Release and Waiver may also be executed if the claimant accepts settlement. View this template of Release, Waiver and Quitclaim for third party death here.