Q&A is a recurring series on the Vey Willetts LLP blog. The aim is to provide quick answers to questions we commonly encounter in our day-to-day practice of employment law. In this edition, we focus on temporary lay-offs from work.
Employees are entitled to work in a respectful environment, free from harassment and discrimination. In circumstances where the work environment deteriorates to such an extent that it may be considered “poisonous” or “toxic”, a court will likely find that the employer’s behaviour in creating and/or condoning this environment amounted to a constructive dismissal of the affected employee.
Q&A is a recurring series on the Vey Willetts LLP blog. The aim is to provide quick answers to questions we commonly encounter in our day-to-day practice of employment law. In this edition, we focus on constructive dismissal from employment.
The Ontario Court of Appeal recently released its decision in Brake v RJ-M2R Restaurant Inc. This is an important decision for employees and employers alike as it may potentially change the way in which Ontario courts assess a wrongfully dismissed employee’s mitigation efforts and their consequent entitlement to additional severance. Mitigation refers to the obligation of dismissed employees to look for alternate comparable employment. Feldman J.A.’s concurring reasons, in particular, suggest that where a dismissed employee accepts an inferior job, any earnings therein may not count as ‘mitigation income’.
When the T-1000 came from the future to destroy John Connor, Arnie made sure he was stopped in his tracks. While employers who have to date relied upon prohibitive time and costs to deter ex-employee claims might not face the wrath that Skynet did, given the recent decision of Cloutier v. Q Residential LP Corp, 2015 ONSC 4431 (CanLII), a rethinking of such approaches may be required.
Since the Supreme Court's decision in Hryniak v. Mauldin, 2014 SCC 7 (CanLII), summary judgment has become a common tool in straightforward employment law matters. In Hryniak, the Court was explicit that summary judgment should be used whenever there "is no genuine issue requiring a trial."