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What You Need to Know If You Are About to Get Fired

In Ontario, there are specific requirements an employer must follow to properly dismiss a non-unionized employee without causing a wrongful dismissal. Something to keep in mind, however, is that as long as the dismissal is not discriminatory, an employer can dismiss an employee without cause for any reason as long as the proper notice or pay in lieu of notice is provided to the employee. As such, some employees may have concerns that they are on the verge of losing their employment and wondering what they should do about the situation. This article outlines what you need to know if you are about to get fired.

Concerns About a Just Cause Dismissal

In Ontario, a without cause dismissal can severely impact an employee. The employee would not be entitled to receive any notice or pay in lieu of notice for the dismissal, nor would they be eligible for Employment Insurance while seeking new employment. While it can be quite difficult to prove just cause at law, employers may still end up going through with such a dismissal depending on the circumstances.

An employee facing performance or disciplinary issues at work may have concerns they are about to receive a just cause dismissal or about to get fired. Such an employee may want to consider responding to the employer’s criticisms in writing to explain themselves, requesting additionally training, disclosing any personal or medical issues affecting performance, and attempting to follow any advice for improvement provided by the employer. The employer would want to demonstrate there are external reasons for any possible issues, including those which may be protected by Ontario’s Human Rights Code, or that they are attempting to improve.

If an employer is basing performance or disciplinary issues on subjective or unclear criteria, the employee can consider requesting clarification in writing and specifying the criteria is unclear. Employees should keep in mind that every employer is different and there is no guarantee as to whether such actions will delay a dismissal of employment. While an employer may make up their mind that the employee’s employment is not working out, it may be possible to stall the dismissal until the employee is in a stronger position to deal with the consequences.

Other Options to Consider

Additionally, an employee may want to prepare for a possible dismissal in the event that it does take place. The employee can consider documenting everything that takes place at the workplace and making copies of any relevant workplace documents such as their employment agreement. Having these documents on hand will be helpful to the employee should a dispute over a dismissal arise in the future.

An employee in this situation should consult with an employment lawyer to determine any other potential options that may exist to delay a dismissal or ensure an employee receives their proper dismissal entitlements upon dismissal of employment.

Contact Us

If you are an employee and believe you are about to get fired or believe you are facing a just cause dismissal, or an employer who is facing a wrongful dismissal claim, our team of experienced employment lawyers at Achkar Law can help. Contact us by phone toll-free at 1 (800)771-7882 or email us at [email protected] and we would be happy to assist.

If you are a small or medium-sized company looking for full-service support with a same-day response, visit our CLO Program page for our strategic solutions.

Disclaimer: This blog is not intended to serve as or should be construed as legal advice and is only to provide general information. It is in no way particular to your case and should not be relied on in any way. No portion or use of this blog will establish a lawyer-client relationship with the author or any related party. Should you require legal advice for your particular situation, fill out the contact form, call (800) 771-7882 or email [email protected].