The Employment Law Show

What Employers Shouldn’t Do | Employment Law Show TV – S4 E30

Episode Summary

WHAT EMPLOYERS SHOULDN’T DO, ignoring harassment complaints, reductions in wages, and more on Season 4 Episode 30 of the Employment Law Show with employment lawyer Lior Samfiru, Partner at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP.

Watch above to discover your workplace rights and learn everything you need to know about employment law in Ontario, British Columbia, and Alberta, on the only employment law show on both TV and radio in Canada.

Episode Notes

Short-service employees and severance

I began working in a new company in January after being recruited and lost my position in April due to COVID-19. I was offered 2 weeks severance by my employer. Was that enough?

Short service employees are treated disproportionately better than long-term employees in terms of severance. Your severance, however, will actually have to include the time spent at his previous employer as he was recruited.

Can I get severance pay if I only worked a short amount of time for a company?

Segment starts at 2:15

Termination without a reason

My 72-year-old father has been working at the same company for over 30 years of continuous employment. I believe our labour laws allow his employer to let him go without a reason after the age of 70. Is that correct?

An employee can not be made to retire and there are no age limitations to receiving severance.

Segment starts at 4:11

Reduction in wages or resignation

My brother’s work just gave him an option regarding his job: He can return from his temporary layoff at half-pay, or he can choose to resign and look for new employment. Which is the best option?

His best option is to see this situation as constructive dismissal.

Segment starts at 6:45

What Employers Shouldn’t Do

1️⃣  Don’t fire an employee “for cause” if you actually don’t have just cause.

Employers often terminate for cause when in fact it is not.

Segment starts at 11:43

2️⃣  Don’t change your employee’s pay, hours, or duties unless you absolutely have to.

By changing terms of employment you might face a constructive dismissal claim.

Segment starts at 13:13

3️⃣  Don’t fire an employee if they’re not ready to return from a disability leave, or their doctor says they need to be on one.

If an employee is unable to return due to a medical reason or illness and has a doctor’s written confirmation, an employer cannot terminate their employment.

Segment starts at 14:24

4️⃣  Don’t base severance pay on the Employment Standards Act alone.

The Employment Standards Act or the Ministry of Labour will only calculate a minimum entitlement.

Segment starts at 15:40

5️⃣  Don’t treat somebody as an independent contractor if they are truly an employee.

Employers frequently misclassify contract workers when they are actually employees.

Segment starts at 17:25

6️⃣  Don’t ignore workplace harassment.

Employers often don’t fulfill their obligations to rectify harassment complaints.

Segment starts at 18:49

Selling a company without severance offers

The company I’ve been with for 20 years has been sold to another owner. They are forcing me to work for the new owners, meaning I won’t be receiving a severance package. Can they do that?

An employee cannot be forced to work for a new company. Your severance calculation will depend on a variety of factors.

Segment starts at 20:15

Returning from maternity leave

What are an employer’s obligations when an employee returns from maternity leave? If the company is a small business experiencing financial issues, and they claim not to have your old position available, would they owe severance?

An employer has an obligation to give the employee returning from maternity leave their previous position.

Segment starts at 23:30

Refusing to return to work

I will likely be recalled to work in a few weeks. I have heard from coworkers already back at work that our boss isn’t following any of the rules set by public health. Can I refuse to return to work?

An employee can refuse if your employer is not following public health safety guidelines.

Segment starts at 25:50

Working overtime during COVID-19

The company I have been with for 2 years is forcing us to work overtime during the COVID-19 crisis without getting paid for it. If we refuse, we run the risk of being written up. Does the employer have the final say on this?

Overtime pay has to be paid by an employer.

Segment starts at 27:30

Next Episode: Employment Law Show S4 E31 – Wrongful Dismissals in Canada

Previous Episode: Employment Law Show S4 E29 – Terminated After a Temporary Layoff

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