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Severance Packages

Buying a business? Protect yourself from high severance costs

By : | Category : Articles, Constructive Dismissal, Employment Contracts, Severance Packages | Comments Off on Buying a business? Protect yourself from high severance costs

29th Jul 2013

I’m about to purchase another similar business that will effectively double my business. I wish to retain all the staff at the new business and, with the exception of one employee, all have been there short periods (1 to 5 years).

There is one person with 20 years’ experience. Obviously, I would inherit the severance liability if I recognized those 20 years (but I am not buying the corporation, just the assets) but the current vendor does not want to “discount” the price of the business by the amount that I have calculated I could be liable for, should that employee not work out. In fairness to the situation, I don’t believe the employee will ever force me to terminate his employment; however, business is business. I need to protect myself. more

17th Jul 2013

I have been ignoring the bullying that has happened to me for four-and-a-half years. It came to a halt when I was escorted out of the building like a common criminal. Then they terminated my five-and-a-half year employment, without cause. No one should be subjected to this kind of treatment. I have never had this happen to me before. This is a big black mark on my employment record. What would be my next steps? more

15th Jul 2013

I have been on maternity leave for about a year. Two weeks before my scheduled return to work, I was informed that, because of some restructuring within the organization, my role is changing and that I have the option to return or take a severance package.

The details of the package were e-mailed to me and the package will be equivalent to around four months of my salary (which I think is generous considering I only joined the company in May, 2011). In terms of the changes to the job should I choose to return, I will require more “technical” skills, but the rest of the requirements are pretty much the same.

Is this legal? more

I love the tales from the workplace trenches – everyday workplace disputes fuelled by misunderstandings, misapprehension of the law, ignorance or worse. Here are questions from three readers of this column, followed by the advice I would provide: more

Employment contracts are becoming the biggest loophole in workplace law – but that loophole only works for employers.

Companies, with acute knowledge of how employment contracts can operate to their advantage, are increasingly requiring staff to sign one-sided agreements that reduce their legal rights.

These employees – most without any bargaining power, or worse, without an understanding of the law – often do not realize their legal interests are being undermined.

But if the law permits employers to do it, then why would they not try to prevent expensive lawsuits, large severance packages and competition from former employees, all with the stroke of a pen? more

I was laid off this summer. After discussing with several lawyers the severance package offered, I was told I deserved more so I contested the offer.

After negotiating various issues, the last offer made to me was ‘taken off the table’ by the employer and the matter deemed ‘closed’ by its lawyer. Can my employer not pay me anything at all because my lawyer and I did not accept the offers they proposed?

I worked with my employer for close to 25 years and was laid off without cause and with no notice due to a change in the company’s business needs. Am I not entitled to the minimum severance offered under employment standards legislation? more

I work for a company and I am currently on a parental leave. The division of the company I work for has since been shut down and I have no job to return to.

Since I am on leave, I heard this news from a colleague at a different company – no one (not even human resources) reached out to me to advise me of the closure. I contacted HR to find out exactly what was going to happen to me. HR advised that most likely no “like positions” would be available to me when I return and I would be given a severance when I do “try” to come back. I was not told the exact dollar figure of the severance, although I think this is important information for me to know.

Shouldn’t the company tell me exact figures of a potential severance package and secondly, shouldn’t they be obligated to provide me a position with a similar salary upon my return? more

I was terminated without cause from my job recently after working there for three years. The company said it was a business decision. They have given me three weeks termination pay and my benefits until this month. If I agree to sign a “full and final release and indemnity” form they are offering one additional week of termination pay and an additional week of benefits. Is this fair or should I ask for more? more

Teleworking arrangements

By : | Category : Employment Contracts, Severance Packages, Wrongful Dismissal | Comments Off on Teleworking arrangements

25th Nov 2012

Sometimes employees too easily confuse who gets to call the legal shots. Believing that their job is an entitlement, some workers try to take the law into their own hands. They are often mistaken. This is the story of one employee who learned this lesson the hard way. more

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions I received in 2010 – and the advice I provide for employees in 2011. more