Archives: Terminations

Subscribe to Terminations RSS Feed

Bill 17 – Proposed Changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code

On May 24, 2017, the Government of Alberta tendered and passed first reading of Bill 17: Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act (the “Bill”). The Bill proposes a number of significant amendments to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code and Labour Relations Code. This blog post provides a summary of the key changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code … Continue Reading

Incentive Plans In Alberta Can Still Limit Entitlements to “Actively Employed” Employees

The recent Queen’s Bench decision Styles v. AIMC was widely discussed given that it found an employee was entitled to LTIP awards vesting after termination despite clear contractual language requiring the employee to be “actively employed” on the LTIP payout date.  The Trial Judge found that dismissing an employee without allowing his LTIP grants to vest was “bad faith” in contractual relations (as an unprecedented extension of the principles … Continue Reading

The Ontario Court Of Appeal Thinks That Fraud Still Constitutes Just Cause

Reversing a lower court decision, in Fernandes v. Peel Educational & Tutorial Services Limited (“Fernandes”), the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled that a school had just cause to fire a teacher who had “committed acts of misconduct, including the creation of false marks and inaccurate grades and then lying to cover up the improprieties”. This … Continue Reading

At Least A Few Days After And Never At The Termination Meeting

A recent case out of British Columbia provides a timely reminder of a best practice for Alberta employers. In Saliken v Alpine Aerotech Limited Partnership, 2016 BCSC 832, a relatively short service employee was dismissed, allegedly for just cause. On the termination date the employee was told that he was fired and called to an … Continue Reading

Yes Your Employees May Be Legally Entitled To Time Off Work To Watch Their Kids, Even If They Give You No Advance Notice

We recently came across this new Ontario human rights decision in the course of advising an Alberta employer on an employee child care issue. There are relatively few Alberta decisions that speak to this issue, so Alberta employers often have to look for guidance from the Ontario, British Columbia, and Federal tribunals and courts, when … Continue Reading

My Former Employee Left Behind Some Personal Property. What Can I Do With It?

Employees occasionally leave behind personal property following termination of employment. Whether it is discovered immediately or long after the employee has departed, many Alberta employers would be surprised to learn that they have certain obligations to that former employee with respect to the treatment of the personal property. The Unclaimed Personal Property and Vested Property … Continue Reading

This Employer’s Case Had 99 Problems – Proving Cause Was One

A recent case out of Calgary, Karmel v. Calgary Jewish Academy (2015 ABQB 731), presents some valuable lessons for Alberta employers. This case involves a wrongful dismissal lawsuit by a terminated School Principal, Mr. Karmel, who was alleged to have been disobedient.  Ultimately, the Court found that the School did not meet its burden in … Continue Reading

A Brave New World? – Probably Not But Employers Sometimes Have To Deal With 26 Months’ Notice and “Dependant Contractors”

The Ontario Court of Appeal has further shattered the “24 month maximum” myth.  In Keenan v. Canac Kitchens Ltd., the Court of Appeal upheld a Trial Judge’s finding that two long service workers were “dependent contractors” and therefore entitled to 26 months’ reasonable notice on termination. We do not think that this appeal decision is … Continue Reading

Severance Limiting Clauses CAN work especially in Employment Agreements

A recent Ontario Superior Court decision reinforces some basic principles previously discussed on this Blog (and unfortunately often missed or forgotten by employers). In Asgari v 975866 Ontario Ltd, a motion for summary judgment was decided in the Plaintiff’s favour.  One issue was whether a clause, purporting to limit the Plaintiff’s pay in lieu of … Continue Reading

Ho Ho Holy Moly! – Did You Hear What Happened At The Company Holiday Party?

The holiday season is a jolly-busy time to be an employment lawyer. Not only do we get to spend time with our friends and families, but we are also often asked to help our clients deal with the fallout of the infamous alcohol induced holiday party incident.  Of course, an ounce of prevention is worth … Continue Reading

You Can’t Always Get What You Want…But if You Try Sometimes…You Just Might Find…You Get An Extra 1.5 Months’ Notice

We recently became aware of an interesting Ontario Superior Court decision, decided earlier this year, where the Court awarded the Plaintiff an extra 1.5 months of reasonable notice because his employment was terminated in the month of June. The Court stated: …I find that for a man of Mr. Fraser’s age and level of responsibility … Continue Reading

No Bonus For You! (Sorry You Weren’t Actively Employed)

A recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision upheld a provision in a written bonus program that required an employee to be “actively employed on the date of the bonus payout”. This finding meant that the wrongfully dismissed employee did not receive the value of his bonus during his common law notice period because, as … Continue Reading

Drug and Alcohol Policies in Alberta

Dylan Snowdon In Stewart v Elk Valley Coal Corporation, 2015 ABCA 225, the Alberta Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Human Rights Tribunal that the termination of a safety sensitive employee involved in a workplace incident while under the influence of cocaine did not constitute discrimination. We have been following this case for … Continue Reading

Mass Termination Provisions in Alberta and Saskatchewan

We have been advising frequently on this topic lately for our Western Canadian clients. When planning a restructuring, it is easy for an employer to inadvertently overlook statutory mass termination provisions. Here is a quick reference: Alberta In Alberta, under the Employment Standards Code, an employer who intends to terminate 50 or more employees at … Continue Reading
LexBlog