Colored with scrolling

Try scrolling the rest of the page to see this option in action.

Understanding Termination Laws: What You Need to Know

Understanding Termination Laws: What You Need to Know

May 31, 2024

Your job is like a two-way street. You work for someone, and they pay you. But what happens when that street ends? Knowing your rights when a job ends is important, and this guide will help you navigate those confusing “termination laws.” 

The purpose of this article is to ensure fairness and legal compliance in the workplace by giving employers and workers a clear awareness of their rights and duties under employment law. Here, we’ll examine important termination-related ideas in plain, understandable language.

Employment Law Basics

The rights and obligations of employers and workers are governed by employment law. It addresses several topics, including pay, workplace safety, and — most importantly — the circumstances for a worker’s legitimate termination.

  • Equal Opportunity Hiring: By outlawing discrimination throughout the recruiting process based on race, religion, gender, or age, employment law guarantees fairness in the job market. This encourages a varied workforce and draws in the best applicants.
  • Workplace Safety: A safe workplace is a right for employees. This includes establishing a culture devoid of harassment and bullying in addition to implementing physical safety precautions. Employment law establishes guidelines for worker safety and offers tools to guarantee a safe and healthy work environment.
  • Wages and Hours: Employment law ensures equitable remuneration for employee hours worked, from minimum wage regulations to overtime payments.
  • Termination and Redundancy: Employment law sets forth the legal guidelines that enable employers to discharge workers lawfully, protecting them from wrongful termination and directing redundancy procedures.
  • Employee Benefits: It oversees the management of health insurance, pensions, and other benefits connected to the workplace.
  • Dispute Resolution: Using the processes outlined by employment laws, employers and employees can settle complaints and disputes. This might include internal procedures, mediation, arbitration, and litigation.

Termination Law

Let’s check the main two types of termination. 

  • Wrongful Termination 

Wrongful termination occurs when an employee is fired in violation of legal protections. Terminating an employee for retaliatory or discriminatory grounds is prohibited. Illegal reasons for termination include gender, race, or religion, or because you filed a complaint with the corporation.

  • Constructive Termination 

Constructive termination occurs when an employee leaves because their working circumstances are intolerable as a result of their employer’s actions. Significant salary reductions, unfriendly work conditions, or abrupt changes in job responsibilities without permission are a few examples. Due to the employer’s force, the resignations are regarded by the law as terminations.

What to do When you Get Fired?

  • Ask Why (Nicely): Politely inquire about the reason for your termination. Ideally, try to get it in writing.
  • Review Your Termination Package (if offered): This might include severance pay, benefits continuation, and a Record of Employment (ROE). Read it carefully before signing anything.
  • Know Your Rights: Canadian termination regulations are not the same as “at-will” employment policies in the United States. You could be qualified for severance pay, depending on your situation (length of employment, cause for termination).
  • Get the Documents: Collect any employment-related paperwork, including contracts, pay stubs, and performance reviews. This might be helpful if you need legal advice.
  • Analyze Your Legal Choices: If you believe you were dismissed improperly or fired illegally, consult with an employment lawyer. They can tell you about your rights and legal choices.
  • Submit an Employment Insurance (EI) Application: EI benefits can be available to help with living expenses while you hunt for a job. Apply as soon as possible—ideally, within four weeks after the termination.
  • Start Job Hunting: Go out and find a job, don’t sit around worrying about it. Revise your résumé and begin submitting applications to employers.
  • Update Your References: Request a favourable employment reference from a former coworker you can trust.
  • Proceed: Losing your job might present a chance for a new beginning. Spend some time thinking about your professional objectives and looking into different career paths.

If you’re the boss, understanding these laws is important too. A lawyer who helps businesses (business lawyer) can:

  • Write Clear Rules: They can help you write clear contracts that explain how terminations work at your company.
  • Make a Handbook: They can help you create a handbook that outlines your company’s rules and expectations for employees.
  • Stay Informed: Laws can change, so a lawyer can help you keep up with the latest rules.

Employment Law and Business Formation

Employment patterns are significantly impacted by business formation. There are differences in the laws governing the rights and obligations of employees and employers among various company formats, including corporations, partnerships, and sole proprietorships. It’s crucial to comprehend these subtleties for compliance and effective HRM.

Lawyer Marketplace

It may be difficult to navigate employment law, so consulting a lawyer is essential. An online directory known as a “lawyer marketplace” connects businesses and workers with lawyers who specialize in employment law. Through these channels, you may get in touch with lawyers for advice on matters involving unlawful or constructive termination.

Employment Law Things to Think About for Remote Employees

The growth of remote labour has presented employment law with new difficulties. Employment law considerations for remote workers include:

  • Laws Vary by Location: Termination rules depend on where you live, not your boss’s office.
  • Data Security is Key: Understand company policies on returning equipment and accessing data after termination.
  • Documentation Matters: Keep records of communication for potential discrimination claims.

Remember, ending a job can be stressful. But by knowing your rights, you can navigate the situation with confidence. Need help? Subscribe to LawVo. 

Back to blogs