When a job offer is made and signed by the candidate, a contractual obligation has been formed. The employee has agreed to provide services and the employer to provide compensation for services received. If the employer suddenly notifies the employee that there will not be work available after an offer has been signed, then this is an anticipatory breach. An anticipatory breach can place an individual in a very misfortunate position, especially if they have left a secure job only to find out there is no work available. With the right representation, individuals found in such a situation can be fairly compensated for their losses.
A case of Levi v Chartersoft Canada Inc. (Chaftersoft) demonstrates the type of damages one may receive through an anticipatory breach claim. Mr Levi accepted a job offer for Marketing and Sales Manager from Mr. Lee, the president of Chartersoft, for a duration of 1 year. The day prior to Levi’s start date, Mr. Lee informed Mr. Levi that the position was no longer available. The reason was that Mr. Lee not longer felt that Mr. Levi’s image was suitable for the products the company promoted. Having left his secure employment, the trial judge awarded Mr. Levi the amount that would have been paid to him for the duration of the one year contract in damages.
If you accept an offer of employment only to have been told that the position is no longer available, it is important to seek legal assistance. An employment lawyer will ensure you are compensated for any losses that may occur due to an anticipatory breach of an employment contract. Many factors can play a role in damage claims, which is why it is important to seek an expert’s advice.