Employment Law

Scotiabank Layoffs: 3% of staff cut, streamlining banking operations


The Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank) is scaling back its staffing levels.

In a news release on Oct. 18, the bank announced that it’s reducing its global workforce by approximately three per cent.

Scotiabank said the decision to lay off staff comes as “customers’ day-to-day banking preferences” continue to change and the company looks for ways to “streamline operational processes.”

The restructuring charge is one of several charges that are expected to impact the bank’s fourth-quarter results by roughly $590 million after-tax.

While $247 million after-tax will involve “severance provisions“, other charges include:

  • $63 million after tax related to the consolidation and exit of certain real estate premises and service contracts.
  • An impairment charge of $280 million after tax related to Scotiabank’s investment in Bank of Xi’an Co. Ltd.

The bank said that it will provide more information when it releases its fourth-quarter results on Nov. 28.

According to reports, Scotiabank employed more than 19,000 people in its third quarter.

Major layoffs continue

The latest reduction at Scotiabank comes amid a flurry of layoffs in 2023.

Major North American companies, including RBC, LinkedIn, Amazon, Twitch, Hopper, Google, Dell, Telus, and Meta, have announced deep job cuts as they continue to navigate challenging economic conditions.

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Termination agreements for Scotiabank employees

In Canada, non-unionized employees at Scotiabank are owed full severance pay when they lose their jobs due to downsizing, corporate restructuring, or the closure of the business.

This includes individuals working full-time, part-time, or hourly in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C.

People working “on contract” or as a contractor may also be owed severance pay — given that many employees in Canada are often misclassified as independent contractors.

Severance can be as much as 24 months’ pay, depending on a number of factors.

Severance pay for federally regulated employees
Severance entitlements during mass layoffs
Rights to severance during a recession

WATCH: Employment lawyer Lior Samfiru explains what rights employees have if they are being fired or let go on an episode of the Employment Law Show.

Before you accept any severance offer, have an experienced employment lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP review it and your employment contract.

We can tell you if what you have been provided is fair and how to get proper severance if it falls short of what you are actually owed.

If you don’t receive the full amount, which happens often, you have been wrongfully dismissed and are entitled to compensation.

In some cases, employers pressure staff into accepting poor severance packages, such as imposing a deadline for accepting the offer.

Non-unionized employees in Canada have up to two years from the date of their dismissal to pursue a claim for full severance pay.

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