Experienced Ottawa Wrongful Dismissal Lawyers

Being terminated or wrongfully dismissed from a job without cause can quickly result in financial insecurity, especially in situations where the employer fails to provide adequate notice and/or pay. For employees suddenly finding themselves without work, this is often a highly emotional and uncertain time. It is crucial to seek the assistance of a skilled and effective employment lawyer as soon as possible in order to assess the situation and determine one’s rights.

The wrongful dismissal lawyers at Champ & Associates have spent many years dedicated to the practice of employment law. They excel at protecting employee rights in a range of industries, in both the private and public sectors. They provide insight and a clear strategy for clients, quickly identifying the best chance of success in any wrongful dismissal matter. They are experienced in all forms of seeking remedies, including trials, mediation, arbitration and appearing before tribunals. They work efficiently to ensure their clients suffer as little fallout as possible from their wrongful termination.

What is Wrongful Dismissal?

While an employer is entitled to terminate an employee at any time without cause, they must provide sufficient notice based on the employee’s employment history. Some of these minimum standards are spelled out in Ontario’s Employment Standards Act 2000 (ESA). However, there are additional entitlements that have been established under the common law in Ontario, above and beyond what is provided for in the existing legislation.

What are the Remedies for Wrongful Dismissal?

Termination Pay

The primary remedy for a person who has been wrongfully dismissed is notice, or pay in lieu of notice, otherwise known as termination pay. Under the ESA, employees are entitled to a certain number of weeks’ notice based on the length of their employment.

Over time, Ontario’s courts have established additional minimums by way of judicial decisions that have set precedents throughout the province. While termination pay under the ESA is based entirely on years of service, courts will often take a more holistic approach by looking at additional factors. For example, if the employee was near retirement at the time of termination and is, therefore, less likely to secure similar employment elsewhere, this may impact the total award.

Severance Pay

In addition to termination pay, severance pay is another potential remedy for wrongful dismissal. Severance pay is pay awarded over and above termination pay to compensate long-term employees for their years of service. Entitlement to severance pay is dependent on the following:

  1. The employee must have been with the employer for at least five years prior to termination, and;
  2. The employer must have a payroll exceeding $2.5 million or have terminated at least 50 employees within a six-month period due to business closure.

Given these requirements, employers of at least 50 people will likely be liable for severance pay in cases of a business closure due to the employer’s bankruptcy.

Damages for Bad Faith in a Termination

In addition to the above remedies, employees may also be entitled to further compensatory damages in cases where their employer acted in bad faith. For example, if the employee was falsely accused of misconduct, or if the employer acted unprofessionally with respect to the termination, a court may impose moral, aggravated or punitive damages against the employer.

Champ & Associates: Results-Focused Representation for Wrongful Dismissal

Paul Champ has earned a reputation in Ottawa as an extremely effective advocate for those who have been wrongfully dismissed. He and his team regularly receive referrals from their peers for complex wrongful dismissal matters for employees at all levels of seniority and in a wide range of industries. The highest compliment a lawyer can receive is winning the endorsement of another lawyer they have previously faced in litigation. Champ & Associates is proud to say that they have received many such referrals.

The employment lawyers at Champ & Associates work to secure a positive resolution as quickly as possible, knowing that clients are often facing hardships while awaiting compensation. They will go to bat for clients at the negotiating table and will provide an unwavering defence in court or alternative dispute resolution methods if necessary. To discuss your matter in confidence, please contact the firm by telephone at 613-237-4740 or reach out online.