“We cannot continue to tolerate John’s misconduct, and we have decided to dismiss him for cause… once we get through the trade show next month.” Famous last words? Well, they will certainly weaken the position that just cause for dismissal existed in the circumstances. If an employer truly believes that they have just cause for dismissal, the employee should not be permitted to continue working, as that is entirely inconsistent with the notion that the employer could not continue to keep the employee on.
A recent decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal, confirming a trial decision, once again demonstrates the difficulty employers will face in satisfying courts in this province that there was cause for dismissal.
Dismissals for cause can be one of the most interesting and challenging issues within the world of HR. While some companies have simply given up, I often say that “just cause is not a lost cause”.
Every month I have the benefit of drafting a quick blog on great employment law topics. A case that I very recently read, which is probably the best employment case I have ever read, catalyzed my interest in drafting a quick primer on the law of just cause. In the case of Barton v. Rona Ontario Inc. (2012 ONSC 3809) the plaintiff Kerry Barton was an assistant store manager at Rona in Barrie. He managed approximately 140 employees. One of the employees was wheelchair bound…
In order to be in a position to dismiss an employee for cause, it is critical that the employer have appropriate documentation. However, many managers and supervisors unwittingly place their employers in a weakened legal position by failing to use performance and salary reviews properly.
Making the decision to dismiss an employee for just cause and litigating a wrongful dismissal claim on the basis of summary dismissal are two different things…