If you have been fired or laid off, it is strongly recommended that you immediately seek the assistance of an employment lawyer in reviewing your severance package. Severance packages are notoriously unfair or insufficient because employers will always offer terminated employees the barest Employment Standards Act minimum in order to declare that they have paid benefits in accordance with the Ministry of Labours Termination and Service Guidelines. There are many factors that must be considered in calculating a severance package which include but are not limited to the following:
- Does the employee fall under the Ontario Employment Standards Act?
- Does the employee have an employment contract?
- Does the employment contract contain a termination clause?
- Is the termination clause enforceable?
- How long did the employee work for the employer?
- How old is the employee?
- What type of role did the employee have?
- How long will it take the employee to find a new job?
- Did the employee complain about harassment?
- Was the employee subject to discrimination based on age, sex, disability, or other grounds?
- Did the employer treat the employee in good faith during the termination?
Considering the non exhaustive factors listed above, a terminated employee may be entitled to more severance pay than is being offered by their employer. It is therefore extremely important that a terminated employee first seek the legal advice and guidance of an employment lawyer to audit their severance package before signing off. This will ensure that your former employer is meeting the minimum standard for notice periods and severance payments that may be owed.
Have you been offered a severance package? Do not sign off on your package before speaking with Mackenzie Law. We offer both employers and employees a free consultation.