If you think you may be going into a termination meeting or have already been terminated please consider the following:
- Be professional and try not to get upset. The employer likely owes you severance but if you do something unprofessional it is not too late for them to fire you for just cause and then pay you nothing.
- Never sign anything or agree to anything at the meeting. You have the right to think about any offers and speak to an employment law lawyer. If they just give you a letter, never sign it and return it. Give yourself some time if there is a deadline, Calgary employment lawyers cannot not always fit you in on a day’s notice.
- You cannot bring a lawyer to the meeting. Bringing a lawyer to the meeting may turn the lawyer into a witness and a lawyer cannot be both a witness and a lawyer. In any event, the employer will not allow it. If the employer is paying for your time and it wants a meeting then it can have meeting and it can decide who attends.
- Ask about a reference letter. That will show your professionalism and that you are not going to burn any bridges. The reference letter can be negotiated like anything else. If you do not discuss it at the meeting, raise it later.
- Ask about your benefits. The kids may have a dentist appointment next week. You need to know what is covered and for how long and when you can submit the claims. Also, if your benefits are going to be extended, may as well make the appointment while you still can.
- Ask about outplacement counselling, especially if you are a long term employee. Finding a job may not be what it used to be when you were first hired. Many large employers offer to pay for this type of service.
Always remember that Termination Pay under the Employment Standards Code is NOT the same thing as common law severance: ask an employment lawyer about the difference and what you are entitled to under the law. There are no “rules of thumb” for calculating common law severance. This comes from the top: the Supreme Court of Canada. Speak to an employment lawyer to get that advice, as getting the advice from friends and family is not reliable.
By Darryl Aarbo of Aarbo Fuldauer LLP
For more information, please contact the law office of Aarbo Fuldauer LLP at:
Address: 3rd Floor, 1131 Kensington Road NW, Calgary, AB, T2N 3P4
Phone: (403) 571-5120
Barrister & Solicitor
*The information contained in this blog is not legal advice. It should not be construed as legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. If you require legal assistance, please contact a lawyer*