As the pandemic continues, and as we see more court decisions that analyze terminations that took place during the pandemic, we are gaining some clarity on how courts are viewing the impact the pandemic has had on a variety of factors.
In 2017, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice reiterated the importance of character of employment in Skov v G&K Services Canada, in which the character of the plaintiff’s employment was in question.
When advising a wrongfully terminated employee as to her legal rights and obligations, I always point out that a wrongful dismissal claim is not like winning the lottery. While employers are obligated to provide reasonable notice of termination or payment in lieu of such notice, terminated employees must make “reasonable efforts” to find new employment. As is often the case, the devil is in the details. What must a dismissed employee do to meet her obligation to mitigate? What have courts determined to be reasonable steps? What conduct has been held to be unreasonable? From whose perspective will reasonableness be judged–the employers or the employees?