The Employment Law Show

Wrongful Dismissals in Canada | Employment Law Show S4 E31

Episode Summary

WRONGFUL DISMISSALS IN CANADA, fired for cause, forced resignations, and more on Season 4 Episode 31 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

Employee requires accomodation

I have been off work and called to return to work. Unfortunately, I could not find any childcare and so I asked my employer if I could work from home. My employer refused to accommodate me.

An employee cannot be penalized for being unable to find childcare if they have tried to do so. Your employer needs to accommodate your situation.

Segment starts at 2:00

Termination for cause

My brother-in-law is a mechanic. For many years, he has been doing the odd oil change for family and friends at home. His employer of almost 12 years has been okay with this but just used it as an excuse to fire him for cause, without severance. Is that fair?

Your employer cannot terminate you for cause for something they were aware of previously and accepted.

Segment starts at 5:00

Not recalled from a temporary layoff

I was temporarily laid off months ago, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. While some of my coworkers have been called back, I have yet to receive the phone call. I’m beginning to think it won’t ever come. What should I do now?

You can treat this as termination and pursue your full severance entitlements.

Segment starts at 7:34

Wrongful Dismissals in Canada

1️⃣ Before we talk about what a wrongful dismissal is, why don’t you tell us what it ISN’T.

A wrongful dismissal does not have to do with the reason for being let go.

Segment starts at 12:05

2️⃣ What exactly is a wrongful dismissal in Canada?

Wrongful dismissal is a situation in which an employee has been let go and not paid proper severance.

Segment starts at 13:20

3️⃣ How common are wrongful dismissals?

Wrongful dismissals are very common, as most terminations are wrongful dismissals.

Segment starts at 14:05

4️⃣ What is the difference between a wrongful dismissal and a constructive dismissal?

Constructive dismissal is a type of wrongful dismissal; it is when the company did something that ensured an employee would pursue termination.

Segment starts at 15:10

5️⃣ Is a severance package deadline enforceable?

An employee does not have to accept a severance offer by their employer’s deadline. It is a pressure tactic.

Segment starts at 16:07

6️⃣ You’ve been let go, and have possibly been wrongfully dismissed. What do you do?

An employee should determine whether they have been wrongfully dismissed and can do so using the pocket employment lawyer.

Segment starts at 17:25

Forced resignation

My wife has been working for a large bank for 10 years. A health condition over the last few years has kept her from reporting to work regularly. Her employer says her output at work has dropped as a result. Can the company force her to resign from her job?

If you have a doctor’s note stating that a medical condition is impacting your job, you are protected from being forced out. Your employer cannot punish you, and they cannot let you go.

Segment starts at 18:50

Employment agreement red flags

I am being transferred by my employer to a new company, resulting in more job duties at the same level of pay. I am being asked to sign documents that talk about termination without severance. The new contract will also prohibit me from getting a promotion. Do I have to sign it?

Before signing a new employment agreement, it is good practice to contact an employment lawyer.

Segment starts at 22:44

Insufficient medical support

A major life event forced me to go on long-term disability due to severe stress. Since I started LTD a year ago I have been harassed by the adjuster, who just last week cut off my claim due to insufficient medical support. I’m not ready to work, but have been trying unsuccessfully to contact my employer about returning to my job. Can you help?

It’s important that you contact a disability lawyer as soon as possible.

Segment starts at 25:35

Reduced hours

How long can my employer keep me working on reduced hours? Can I refuse after a certain amount of time has passed and my hours haven’t been restored?

An employee in this situation can treat this change in hours as constructive dismissal, and leave with their full severance pay.

Segment starts at 27:40

Next Episode: Employment Law Show S5 E1 – Temporary Layoffs During COVID-19

Previous Episode: Employment Law Show S4 E30 – What Employers Shouldn’t Do

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