Employers are always looking at ways to mitigate risk. This is important when terminating an employee. It is important to apply applicable Employment Standards, outline termination guidelines in original offer documents, seek legal advice, and/or offer a severance payment. Sometimes these proactive actions are not taken. In event of this, there is still a way for employers to avoid a wrongful dismissal case. An example would be an after the fact approach in a case where employees who were wrongfully dismissed were not rewarded any damages due to the actions the employer took following the termination of their employment. In both cases listed the employer provided the employees with alternate work opportunities after they had been dismissed. The employees chose not to accept these opportunities and to take legal action which did not turn out in their favour. Why? Because there is opportunity for employers to substantially reduce or even eliminate an employee’s entitlement to damages for wrongful dismissal by arranging to provide an alternative but commensurate position or working notice. Based on this fact, it is important that employers take a step back even if a wrong decision has already been made and correct it. There is always room for damage control.
written by Samantha Kirby /Human Resource Specialist / PEO Canada/