Fired While on Maternity Leave
Is Your Job Safe?
Do you think your job is safe while you are on maternity or parental leave and will your severance be enough to support you in the future? Think again!
Overwhelmed by new parenthood duties and the possibility of losing their job, it may be harder than you think to find all the necessary information and to know your rights in the event that being fired while on maternity leave happens to you.
The best approach is to consult with an expert who can discuss your options in case a termination happens while on maternity or parental leave. Toronto Employment Lawyer, Daniel Lublin answered a similar question in his latest article published in the Globe & Mail, Is it legal to lay off a worker on maternity leave?
Fired While on Maternity Leave: Is Termination Legal?
Is termination legal while on maternity leave?
Termination while on leave is not strictly illegal. It is only illegal if your termination is related to or because you are on leave or because you will now have child-care requirements.
Employment standards legislation requires employers to reinstate employees at the end of their leave to the job they held or to a comparable job if their job no longer exists. However, if an employer can prove that a termination was unrelated to the leave of absence, such as where a division shuts down or a major client is lost, then reinstatement may not be required.
Is the termination package good enough?
Fired while on maternity leave or shortly after leave may justify more severance. Severance pay is based on how long it should take you to secure a comparable job. The courts consider your age, tenure, position and the availability of other work having regard to your personal circumstances. This last factor is much more subjective than the others, and employees returning from parental leave or who are terminated while on leave often argue that finding another job after being out of work is more difficult.
This topic is without a doubt, one of the most misunderstood and contentious issues in employment law. To learn more about your options, contact an employment lawyer who can explain and advise on which steps should be taken to your benefit.