Employment Law

Starbucks Canada closing 200 locations, restructuring due to Covid

starbucks canada, starbucks canada layoffs and severance pay

Starbucks Canada is planning to close approximately 200 locations across the country in response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

The Seattle-based coffee chain told shareholders on Wednesday, June 10 that it is restructuring its Canadian business through a two-year plan. The drastic reduction in the number of coffee shops coincides with changing consumer habits as a result of the pandemic.

Starbucks Canada said some of their stores will be “repositioned.” While that term’s true meaning remains unclear, it is believed that locations could be moved to new areas. The chain has also been testing pick-up only coffee shops in the country.

Severance agreements for Starbucks Canada employees

In Canada, non-unionized employees working at Starbuck 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.

All non-unionized employees are entitled to severance pay during the COVID-19 pandemic if they are terminated, or let go, from their job. A company doesn’t have the option of “suspending” their legal obligations due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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, including any bonus payments an employee has earned through the employer.

Rights to severance for provincially regulated employees
Severance entitlements during mass layoffs
Severance packages in 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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