Your Employment Contract - Can They Hold You to a Job?

Layoffs in 2024: Your Rights & Protections

How Can I Navigate Layoffs in 2024 and Job Insecurity?

The latest Glassdoor Employee Confidence Index shows a decline in employee confidence levels in 2024. High interest rates, continuing layoffs in 2024, and persistent hiring freezes have kept employment spirits dampened. It can be a brutal time to be an employee. Cost-cutting can lead to even high-performing workers to be fired with no warning, tossed into a lagging market where many employers are not interested in recruiting anybody.

Do I Know My Rights During Layoffs?

If you have experienced a layoff or fear it may happen soon, it is important to be aware of your rights. Your employment can never be terminated even partially for a discriminatory reason, even if it is part of a larger downsizing. Further, you should always get independent legal advice from an employment law expert before signing anything. Once signed, your lawyer’s hands will be tied in terms of what they can negotiate for you.

Employers will often point to termination provisions in employment agreements as justification for their low initial severance offers. This is often not the end of the story. The judge-made common law requires termination provisions to be drafted very carefully, lest they be rendered unenforceable. A knowledgeable employment lawyer can spot even the hardest-to-find defect in termination clauses. If this happens, or there is no termination clause to begin with, then you are owed reasonable notice.

This is meant to act as a bridge to your next job. How long would it take an individual of your age, tenure, position, and salary to find comparable employment? Other factors are considered in calculating this period too, such as a depressed economy. Workers laid off today will likely struggle to quickly re-employ. Logically, this supports a longer notice period, and the case law supports this too.

How Can Whitten & Lublin Assist Me?

Working in a time of layoffs is a scary feeling, but you don’t need to go it alone. If you would like more information on how Whitten & Lublin can help you ensure you are getting the severance package you deserve, please contact us online or by phone at (416) 640-2667 today.

Author – Sohrab Naderi