Business closings surpass openings for first time since start of COVID-19

Recently Statscan reported that since August 2021, 43,111 businesses have closed and 41,795 have opened. It marks the first time since May 2020 that closings have exceeded openings. Closings last peaked at the start of the pandemic in April 2020, due to lockdowns imposed as a result of COVID-19.

Economic recovery slowed in August, after an initial recovery in early summer. The rising numbers in June and July were due to lockdowns lifting, as well as the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Experts point out that business closures were low throughout the pandemic. This is a result of government support programs, including wage and rent subsidies.  Still, the pandemic created a need for businesses to lay off many employees to keep costs down.

Am I owed severance if my employer shuts down?

All employees are owed severance when a business closes, as long as a business has not declared bankruptcy or gone into receivership. That would put employees at the back of the line of creditors when a business closes. Employees can also look to the federal Wage Earner Protection Program (WEPP) if there are unpaid wages when a business shuts down.

Time to Change Bankruptcy Laws to Protect Employees

When to contact an employment lawyer

If your employer has gone out of business, speak to an employment lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP.  An employment lawyer can review your severance package and explain your options. An employment lawyer can also help you make a claim for unpaid wages, as company directors may be liable.

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