What am I entitled to if I am fired?
There are generally two ways of being terminated: just cause or without cause.
Just cause is when the employer has a legally valid reason to end your employment. What constitutes just cause will depend on the circumstances. Typically, just cause will involve some sort of serious wrong doing by the employee. If your employer has just cause to terminate you, all you are entitled to is any outstanding pay for hours already worked, including any outstanding overtime pay or unused vacation time. Your employer may also incorrectly claim to have just cause, so its important to discuss whether there was just cause with a lawyer.
Without cause is a termination without a legally justifiable reason, such as lay offs and terminations due to restructuring.
If the termination is without cause, you are entitled to:
- Any unpaid wages or overtime;
- Any unused vacation time;
- Termination notice or pay under the Employment Standards Code.
You may also be entitled to “common law notice”, which is a period of severance pay in addition to the minimum contained in the Employment Standards Code. There are different factors that affect the length of common law notice you may be entitled to, so it is important to discuss common law notice with your lawyer.
There may also be additional damages if the employer terminated you in a particularly harsh or insensitive manner.
For further information, contact one of our lawyers.