Monday, February 25, 2013

Litigating Wrongful Dismissals

Employers generally can dismiss employees with or without cause.

If you are dismissed without cause then in many jurisdictions the employer must provide 'reasonable notice' prior to your departure. It is this grey area that drives many cases of employment litigation.

It is previous case-law that determines what is the ‘reasonable notice’ period that employers need to provide in any given situation. There are Statutory requirements in terms of what a ‘reasonable notice’ period has to be at a minimum but often the common law notice periods are substantially longer.

Often the biggest issue is the cost of litigating a ‘wrongful dismissal’. The wrongfully dismissed employee (which includes the employee who did not receive a sufficient ‘notice’ period (or pay instead of the ‘notice’) has a duty to try to find alternate employment. If alternate employment is available, this can significantly reduce (if not eliminate) whatever ‘damages’ the employee would have suffered.

Provided by the law firm of Taylor Conway specializing in real estate and injury law.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Does my employer need a reason to fire me?

The power of the employer to dismiss employee rests with your jurisdiction (province or State). For example, your employer does not need a reason to fire you in most Canadian provinces. The law requires that the employer either have ‘cause’ for firing you or the employer must provide you with reasonable ‘notice’ of your dismissal. First, if the employer has a reason to fire you, such as you have been taking money illegally from the business or you have been fighting with your co-workers, the employer has ‘cause’ and need not provide you with any ‘notice’ of your dismissal. The employer can have you leave employment immediately. Second, if the employer does not have a reason to fire you, they can still dismiss you but only if they give you proper ‘notice’. What this means is that they have to let you know that after a reasonable period of time (based upon your seniority, experience, income, responsibility etc.) you will be dismissed. Alternatively they can dismiss you immediately if they pay you what you would have been paid had they dismissed you after the notice period. For example, your employer can decide that they just don’t like you and tell you that your job will end in three months. Instead of keeping you for the three months (as a disgruntled employee), they can simply pay you the three months’ salary and send you on your way. Provided by the law firm of Taylor Conway whom specialize in litigation and injury law.