There are a number of issues that can arise in an employment dispute:
In Ontario, if you are a non-unionized employee and have been terminated or dismissed without cause, generally speaking you may be entitled to notice of termination. If you are terminated immediately, you may be entitled to pay in lieu of notice (e.g. severence pay or termination pay).
It is important to review your severance/termination package and understand exactly what you are signing off on. It is possible that what you are agreeing to may be undervalued by legislation or common law.
An Ontario employment lawyer can assist in:
- Reviewing and making sure there are no improper clauses in your employment contract that contravene the Ontario Employment Standards Act.
- Ensuring you receive fair compensation.
Kristoffer can assist by reviewing your package and advising on its fairness. Insufficient severance/termination pay may lead to a wrongful dismissal.
The name itself is misleading, because when people think of wrongful dismissal, they interpret the term to mean the reasons for the dismissal. This is not true.
When an employer terminates or dismisses an employee without reasonable notice, then it may be considered by the court to be a wrongful dismissal. If you are being terminated or let go, Notice Upon Termination may be provided either as working notice (i.e. you continue to work until your date of termination), or alternatively severance pay (either as a salary continuance or a lump sum amount).
The following are the general types of wrongful dismissal claims:
- If you have been terminated without cause, but your employer refuses or fails to pay adequate compensation.
- If you have been constructively dismissed. This means that the employer alters fundamental terms and conditions of employment leading to an intolerable work environment. An intolerable work environment may also be demonstrated by the employer’s own actions in relation to the terminated employee.
- If you were inappropriately terminated with case and the employer fails or refuses to pay any compensation.
It is important to reiterate that your employer’s reasons for terminating you does not automatically result in a wrongful dismissal claim. Employers are generally allowed to let you go and hire a replacement. They just have to pay a severance/termination. However, if the employer breaches any other area of employment law, such as human rights violations or workplace harassment, then these are separate issues that may merit compensation.