Certainly confusing. If the appointment letter specified days, great! But organizations resort to 1 month or 2 months notice period here in Asia. A few questions regarding this:

  • Is 1 month = 30 days or 31 Days?

  • 31 Days? Does this include weekends, public holidays, etc?

  • When the company says it's 30 days and wants me to work for 31st day, I don't want to just because when I asked for relieve a day before (29th day) they said NO. How does one deal with this situation diplomatically and professionally?

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    I resign on the 15th of a month, and on the 15th of the next month my notice is done, whatever month it is. Unless it specifically says otherwise that's what I would say. Aug 29, 2012 at 13:14
  • @Chad company is located in India Aug 29, 2012 at 13:36
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    @Deeptechtons I'm not sure what you mean. The period from 15th of one month to 15th of the next is always 'one month', even though it is a varying number of days. (I admit I am assuming the Western Calendar here.) Aug 29, 2012 at 13:47
  • 5
    Your question pretty much sums up why using vague terms when giving notice is a bad idea. Give them a specific date instead, problem solved.
    – JohnFx
    Sep 1, 2012 at 0:10
  • 1
    It sounds like this is causing you a lot of stress. Stress has been known to weaken the immune system. Why, I bet a month of worry about this might make you cough cough sick.
    – user3497
    Dec 10, 2012 at 20:21

6 Answers 6


There's generally a fair amount of flexibility in notice periods. As an employer, if I was obliged to give someone two weeks paid notice when terminating their employment, I would often give them three, just to be sure they didn't feel they weren't getting enough.

When leaving a job, the smart way to handle it is to tell a manager in person, then hand them a letter that includes the sentence "my last day at work will be Wed Aug 29th" (or whatever.) If the manager feels that is not enough notice, they can say so. Don't let them set your last day.

In Canada, you can't be forced to work and you can't lose entitlements because you didn't give "enough" notice. So you could just walk out of the building and not come back, and the only risk would be a bad reference later. I don't know if that is the employment law where you are. But whether it is or not, take control of your timeline yourself and propose or announce your end date, and let the employer react to it. Don't focus on number of days, focus on when you will last show up for work.

Once you've given your notice and all have agreed to it, don't change it. If I read your question correctly, they are asking at the last minute for you to stay another day or so. And you had earlier asked for a day off. Neither of you should be doing that. During a notice period, everyone is trying to get work finished up, cleared up, and passed on to the replacement. The leaving employee is getting ready for the new job. An extra day here or there, when there are just a few days left, will mess up the plans. If you are able to give them one extra day, good for you. But if you can't, you can't: you gave your notice and that is that, it is time to move on to the next thing.

  • Don't let them set your last day. that's the problem, i let them decide it thinking they would be fair stated i have been really productive employee Aug 29, 2012 at 13:40
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    OK, you let them set it. For whatever reason they chose 31. Or maybe 32 or 33, whatever. It was agreed to. Stick to what was agreed and have the turnover as scheduled. If they chose 31 and now they want a 32nd day, and you're able to give it to them, why not? It will let everything get sorted out properly. But if you are scheduled to start the new job or to move, then you apologize and say it's not possible. None of this has anything to do with you being good or productive or them granting you time off. Aug 29, 2012 at 14:31
  • I have always told my manager in person, discussed the notice period and my last day, and then put what we agreed on in writing for them. But to be honest I've never been in a situation where there was any uncertainty or conflict about the required notice period. Aug 30, 2012 at 4:46
  • A bit of an aside aboout taking time off after giving notice: I once gave notice and then took time off during the notice period. However, that involved a short (3 work days) vacation already scheduled (and approved) which couldn't be moved, and I gave more than enough notice (a full three weeks) to give the employer the two weeks they required.
    – GreenMatt
    Dec 7, 2012 at 13:55
  • @GreenMatt so when you gave your notice they knew about the time off? I think that's key. Everyone agrees how many working days more they will get from you. And then everyone sticks to that. Dec 7, 2012 at 13:59

In countries where contracted notice periods are inflexible, a month's notice is usually a calendar month, so it depends on the month you're in when you resign. Given that it is now August, that'll be 31 days.

If your holidays are pro-rated and you've already taken what you will be due for your final part-year, you really don't have a lot of room to argue should they refuse to give you an extra day off.

That said, have you tried negotiating? Would they let you have it unpaid? What if you agreed to give them 32 days, as long as you can have that day off?

  • I could be wrong but I do not think the OP is interested in giving them an extra day notice to make up for the day off he did not get. But I think you are correct and will need to work 31 days to fulfill his obligation. Aug 29, 2012 at 20:13

If the most detailed specification you can find says "one month", then I would interpret that as follows:

  • Give notice on 2012-08-29
  • Last day is 2012-09-29

Exceptions/edge cases here are of course giving notice on the 31st of a month followed by a month with only 30 days, or on the 29th, 30th, or 31st of January (assuming it's not a leap year), in which case it would be best to choose either the last of the next month or the first of the month after and specify when you give your notice which day will be your last. Both would be perfectly reasonable, and I wouldn't expect any employer to take issue with one day in either direction. If you're concerned about that kind of precision, though, I'd wait a couple days and give notice on the first.


I have changed jobs several times over the years and it has generally been negotiated. If it says one month then it is generally accepted that it will be approximately the same day on the next month as the day on which you resigned (5th August to the 5th Sept).

Some people take a month to be four weeks, working from the day you resign or the next Friday. I have left in two weeks or six weeks, depending on the need and motivations. Some employers want you to wait until you can train your replacement and some employers don't want you around when your motivation may be lower.

If you don't want to work the 31st day then it is diplomatic to give your reasons, but you are not obliged to keep working beyond the notice period, you have resigned and you can stick to the contract. If they disagree then they can take you to court for breach of contract, but they would be fools to do so. If they are such a**holes as to make threats to trash your name with the next employer then try to document that, because you could probably then sue them for loss of earnings.

Employment is a two way contract, they have things they have agreed to give you (money, holidays, etc) and you have things you have agreed to provide to them in return (time & effort). Either side can terminate that contract based on the terms agreed in the contract, but if they breach the terms of the contract then they are in the wrong. You can work beyond the contract terms but that is your choice (otherwise it is crudely classed as slavery or forced labour).

  • 1
    Have you worked in India? Are you sure that it works the same there as it does in the US? I think there are laws and regulations in India that benefit the employer over the employee much more than those in the US. Aug 29, 2012 at 20:10
  • 1
    @Chad - Have you? Its up to the author to research those laws we can't advise him. He wanted to know how long is a month's notice. We have given him the best answer we can. Our answer's should not get any more localized other then perhaps sharing our experiences. Besides the author is based out of China not India.
    – Donald
    Sep 5, 2012 at 14:24
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    @Ramhound - It is ok not to answer if you do not know the answer. It is not acceptable to provide incorrect information. In this case I think the answer may be wrong since it seems to be based on western culture and laws and the question is specifically about India. Sep 5, 2012 at 14:31
  • For Chad's benefit: No, I have never worked in India, I am very well travelled and have worked for companies from several different countries including Asia. The original question did not ask for a specific country, it asks for an opinion on our interpretation of the statement and it only mentions a continent it does not bound the question. Dec 7, 2012 at 12:46

One month is calendar date to calendar date. Submit resignation on the 6th of a month, your last day is the 6th of the next month (or the preceding Friday if the 6th is a weekend).

Most companies will not specify a number of days, but if they do, generally it includes weekends. Ask the HR department. They'll be more than happy to help you out with such questions.

If a company says 30 days, and you request to be able to leave at 29, and they refse, then when they request you work an extra day you can tell them no. In fact, even ignoring the 29 days part, you can say no. That will depend on what you want to do. If you wish to work that extra day, then by all means go ahead. If not, then follow the company's stated procedure.

'Diplomatically and professionally' basically ends up being 'don't be a jerk'. When asked to work an extra day, don't jump up on the desk, start dancing and singing about how you're not going to work any extra time. Instead, a simple 'no, I will not be able to work that extra day, company policy dictates 30' will work just fine.


You could always err on the side of caution, for example saying on the 25th of the month that your last day will be the last day of the next month.

Then you're more than amply giving notice, and there is no confusion.


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