Constructive dismissal occurs when an employer unilaterally makes a significant change to a fundamental condition of an employee’s employment. Even though the employer does not expressly terminate the employee, the employee is entitled to treat their employment as terminated. The departure of the employee will be considered a termination, rather than a resignation.
An employee that is constructively dismissed is entitled to monetary compensation or what is referred to as severance.
Situations that may be classified as constructive dismissal include the following:
- A substantial change to work hours. For example, where your employer changes your work hours from 40 hours per week to 25 hours per week.
- A substantial change to the amount of remuneration. For example, if your employer decreases your pay by a substantial amount.
- A temporary layoff. Unless there is an agreement between the employer and employee permitting this, a temporary layoff is considered a dismissal.
- A permanent change to the geographic location of where you work. For example, you work at a small company with one location in Toronto. Your employment contract states that you will work at their Toronto location, and nothing in the contract expressly or impliedly indicates that you could be transferred to a different location. After a few years of employment, the company opens a new location in Vancouver, and transfers you to the Vancouver location.
- Demotion. For example, your employer makes fundamental changes to the duties that you carry out, such that it the changes effectively equate to a demotion.
Our firm has dealt with many claims dealing with constructive dismissal. If you think you have been constructively dismissed, contact us and we can help you advance a claim against your employer.
Remember: No recovery – no fee