In Hrynkiw v. Central City Brewers & Distillers Ltd. ( 2020 BCSC 1640) Horsman J. had a situation where a CFO was accused of intentionally paying himself excess vacation and shares without the consent of the owner. The Court found that this accusation was unfounded and found that there was no just cause. The Plaintiff was awarded 12 months notice after 6.3 years of service. He was 56 years old.
Almost all employers require new employees to sign an employment contract. And almost all employment contracts have a termination clause. And most of the termination clauses have a provision which states that the employer has the right to terminate an employee for just cause without notice. This case suggests most of these termination clauses are not enforceable.
Somewhere between going on an ill-advised “fishing expedition” and commencing a clearly defined investigation of a formal complaint, lies a grey area rife with uncertain legal obligations and sticky situations.