I have written several times about cases which significantly depart from the so-called one month per year of service rule. There continues to be a seemingly never-ending stream of cases which confirm the perils of assuming that an employer’s liability for reasonable notice of termination will be capped at one month per year of employment.
Small to midsize employers, many HR professionals, and many lawyers proceed based upon completely inaccurate understandings of how employment law works. While there are many examples of this, there are three that I see regularly in my practice:
- the myth that the severance entitlement in Canada is one month per year, regardless of other factors such as age or position;
- the belief that every employee is automatically subject to a probationary period; and
- the belief that when there is a shortage of work, employers automatically have the right to lay employees off temporarily.
As counsel, part of our job is to ensure that both employers and employees understand their rights and obligations. In many cases, employers break the law not out of a desire to shortchange their employee, but simply due to a misunderstanding. Sadly, in many of those cases, the employee in question does not know any better and … Continue reading “Avoiding common employment law misconceptions”
So much for the rule of thumb that an employee should receive one month of notice for every year of service. The Toronto Star has reported on a recent wrongful dismissal decision that Ontario employers should consider, especially when hiring senior managers or executives.