Job Abandonment Ontario

Job Abandonment Ontario


Your job may be 9 to 5, but that does not mean it has to be 24/7.  There are many instances in which employees are lawfully permitted to be away from work, without the employer treating the absence as job abandonment in Ontario.

Consider if you are absent from work because of one or more of the following circumstances:

  • Sickness
  • Stress
  • Disability
  • Vacation
  • Religious observance
  • Maternity/parental leave
  • Loss of a loved one
  • Misdiarized shifts

Many employees in these circumstances find themselves accused of abandoning their job or fired under the pretense of job abandonment. The employer is often wrong, but the employee may still be fired, often without any advanced notice or severance pay. Not only is this unfair, but most likely illegal as well.

Sometimes an employee will refuse to return to work because of a hostile work environment, or serious breach of their employment contract.  This may not amount to job abandonment (across Ontario and Canada), but may, in fact, constitute constructive dismissal.

If there is any dispute about a resignation, Whitten & Lublin Employment & Labour Lawyers can help employees determine:

  • Whether you abandoned your job
  • Whether you were constructively dismissed
  • Whether you are entitled to notice and/or severance pay
  • Whether your human rights have been affected

Read our Job Abandonment article for more information.

Mr. Lublin envisions workplace law as a marriage between employer and employee that often leads to breakdown when one takes advantage of the other. Viewing workplace law through this lens enables Mr. Lublin to quickly identify his client’s objectives – and vigorously pursue them. Some of Mr. Lublin’s career highlights include:

  • Recognized by the Canadian Lexpert Legal Directory as a “Leading Practitioner” of employment law. Lexpert is the most trusted and authoritative listing of leading lawyers in Canada and selection is determined by a vote conducted among peers.
  • Founding partner of Whitten & Lublin – nationally recognized as one of the Top 10 Employment & Labour Law firms by Canadian Lawyer Magazine and the 2016 and 2017 winner of the Best Employment Law firm by Canadian HR Reporter.
  • Ranked as one of “Canada’s Top Employment Lawyers” by Carswell in every year from 2007 to 2014.
  • Awarded the 2011 “Precedent Setter Award” recognizing him as one of the best of the new generation of lawyers in Ontario.
  • The Globe & Mail’s workplace law columnist both in print and online, since 2012.
  • Frequent appearances on national television and radio, as a commentator for workplace legal issues.
  • Published over 575 national newspaper articles since 2005.
  • National Columnist for Metro newspapers from 2006 to 2013.
  • Author of Canada’s first legal text on Independent Contractors, published by Carswell in 2013.
  • Lawyer in several cases for employees awarded in excess of 24 months’ severance, usually reserved only for the most exceptional cases.
  • Named the “Lawyer of the Week” by The Lawyers Weekly in December, 2008.
  • Chair of the Law Society of Upper Canada’s Employment law program for paralegals.

Mr. Lublin is a courtroom lawyer. He represents both employees and employers in all workplace-related legal disputes and human rights matters – with an emphasis on litigation. Some of his reported courtroom decisions include:

Wood v. Fred Deeley Imports, (2017) ONCA 158: prevailed in Ontario’s leading case on employment contracts, decided by the Court of Appeal.

Downtown Kids Academy Inc. v. Zakrzewski 2017 ONSC 5045, successful defence of an injunction application alleging a violation of a non-solicitation clause, brought against a new business owner by her former employer.

Ozorio v. Canadian Hearing Society, (2016) ONSC 5440: successfully doubled the severance package offered to a 30 year senior manager, to 24 months, with the court’s recognition that older and long-term employees should receive significant severance awards to compensate for their age and long service.

Tetra Consulting versus Continental Bank of Canada, (2015) ONSC 4610: successfully obtained a large wrongful dismissal judgment on behalf of a senior bank executive; and see Tetra Consulting v Continental Bank et al., 2015 ONSC 6546: where the defendant was ordered to pay extraordinary legal costs to Mr. Lublin’s client due to its defence strategy.

Buaron v AcuityAds Inc., 2015 ONSC 5774: Successfully convinced a court to strike down an employment contract that attempted to limit Mr. Lublin’s client to only minimum severance and obtained damages for wrongful dismissal due to the termination.

Markoulakis v SNC-Lavalin Inc., 2015 ONSC 1081, secured one of highest ever wrongful dismissal judgments in Canadian history, against SNC Lavalin, obtaining a 27 month severance award following the termination of a senior civil engineer after 41 years’ service.

K.P. v Oracle Canada ULC, successful wrongful dismissal lawsuit on behalf of senior sales executive, against Oracle Canada.

Ledford v. Friendly Times, 2014 HRTO 70, successful defence of human rights lawsuit alleging age discrimination.

Morgan v. Herman Miller Canada Inc., 2013 HRTO 650 – Prevailed in a two week human rights trial concerning discrimination on the basis of race and reprisal, resulting in a significant award of damages for a terminated employee.

Hussain v. Suzuki Canada Ltd., 2011 Carswell Ont 12251 (ON S.C.) – one of the highest ever severance awards in Canada (a 26 month severance package) given to Suzuki Canada’s longest serving employee.

Cardenas v. Kohler Canada Co., 2009 CanLII 17976 (ON S.C.) – one of the largest group wrongful dismissal judgements in Canadian history, where Mr. Lublin successfully obtained nearly $1 million in damages for five terminated employees.

Adjemian v. Brook Crompton North America, 2008 CanLII 27469 (ON S.C.), a precedent setting case at the Ontario Court of Appeal confirming that wrongful dismissal cases can and should be heard in an expedited fashion.

Camaganacan v. St. Joseph’s Printing Ltd., 2010 ONSC 5184 (ON S.C), prevailed in wrongful dismissal case, securing a 16 month severance package for a client who was only offered only 6 months by his employer.

Nasager v. Northern Reflections Ltd., 2011 ONSC 5872, which is an appeal court case, where Mr. Lublin successfully upheld a judge’s decision that his client should be awarded a 6 month severance package where the employer gave him only 5 weeks.

Corporate Investigative Services v. Steele et al. 2012 ONSC 3286 (ON S.C.) – Successful defence of a summary judgement motion in a large corporate action involving two competing security companies.

Harvey v. Shoeless Joe’s, 2011 ONSC 3242 (ON S.C.) – Successful defence of a wrongful dismissal claim from a former executive.

Napolitano v. Friendly Times Child Care Centre, 2012 HRTO 603 – One of the few cases dismissing a human rights application from an ex-employee on a summary hearing.

Hayes v. Peer 1 Network Inc., 2007 CanLII 65614 (ON S.C.D.C.) – wherein Mr. Lublin successfully overturned a lower court’s decision to move his client’s case to British Columbia, instead of Ontario where the client resided.

Mr. Lublin is regularly consulted by other practitioners for assistance in employment-related matters and has been retained by employers in the United States and the United Kingdom to assist in managing the human resources implications of conducting business in Canada. Mr. Lublin is also frequently consulted by employees and executives across Canada to provide assistance with their workplace-related disputes and in the negotiation of their employment contracts and severance agreements. Mr. Lublin is the chair of the Law Society of Upper Canada’s program “Employment Law for Paralegals” and he has appeared as a speaker at numerous events.

In 2009, Mr. Lublin published an extensive article for the University of New Brunswick’s Law Journal entitled “Wrongful Dismissal: Bad faith damages in Canadian Employment Law”, critiquing the Supreme Court’s seminal ruling in Keays v Honda.

Daniel graduated from the University of Western Ontario and was awarded a prize in Labour Law.

Some of Mr. Lublin’s recent news quotes and journal publications are listed below:

  • The Globe and Mail, “Wrongfully fired employees can work together to help end age discrimination“, Nov 23, 2018
  • The Globe and Mail, “Is your employment lawyer the real deal?“, May 2, 2012
  • The Lawyers Weekly, “Workplace game change”, March 7, 2014
  • The Law Times, Employer’s aggressive defence tactics come with hefty price tags, November 2015
  • The Lawyers Weekly, “Challenging the “right” to telecommute”, May 17, 2013
  • Toronto Star, “RBC apologizes to outsourced workers”, April 11, 2013
  • Toronto Star, “Ottawa approved foreign workers to replace RBC Employees”, April 8, 2013
  • CTV National News “Class action lawsuits over unpaid overtime”, March 22, 2013
  • CTV’s Canada AM “Ask a Lawyer”, February 27, 2013
  • Canadian HR Reporter, “Relationship Problems at Work”, February 26, 2013
  • Law Times “Who owns employees social media accounts”, Nov 2012
  • Readers Digest “How Maternity Leave is failing Canadian Woman”, August 2012
  • The Toronto Star “Would you reveal your Facebook password for a job”, March 21, 2012
  • The Lawyers Weekly “Offering only the minimum a ‘costly gamble’, March 2, 2012
  • Canadian Business Magazine, “The dark side of maternity leave”, September 14, 2011
  • Law Times, “Lawyer’s letters can be perilous“, September 5, 2011
  • Toronto Star, “High profile resignations work for some”, July 15, 2011
  • The Lawyers Weekly “Terminating long-term employees”, July 8, 2011
  • The Toronto Star, “Social media leaves trail for bosses”, July 6, 2011
  • The Globe and Mail, “When push comes to shove: mandatory retirement”, May 13, 2011
  • Canadian HR Reporter, “Employee wins back unilateral pay cuts”, January 17, 2011
  • The Toronto Star, “What you do outside of work can get you fired”, May 10, 2011
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, “When a manager isn’t a ‘manager’, April 6, 2011
  • The Globe and Mail, “Computer ruling seen as landmark workplace decision”, March 26, 2011
  • The Globe and Mail, “Employment contracts: what you need to know”, January 8, 2011
  • National Post – Young Entrepreneur Spotlight, December 2010
  • University of New Brunswick Law Journal, Issue 59 “Wrongful Dismissal: bad faith damages in Canadian employment law”, 2009
  • Canadian Compensation and Benefits Reporter, “Employer pays 10K in equity case”, October 2010
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, “Court slashes damages for Bell manager’s assault”, June 30, 2010
  • Canadian Corporate Counsel Magazine “A new bar for safety on the job” summer, 2010
  • Canadian Employment Law today, “Get out the swear jar at work”, June 16, 2010
  • Law Times, “Assessing the validity of employee bonuses”, June, 2010
  • Canadian Employment Law today “Court slashes damages for manager’s assault” June, 2010
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, “Paranoid employer goes too far” January 13, 2010
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, “Employer not to blame for employee’s mental breakdown” April 9, 2008
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, “Silence may not always be golden” June 18, 2008
  • Globe and Mail, Job Security on Leave, May 6, 2009
  •, “NDP wants more EI for new moms” April 28, 2009
  • National Post “It’s not just a fear: you’ve been laid off” February 3, 2009
  • Toronto Star “Family Day confusion still reigns” February 14, 2009
  • The Lawyers Weekly “Names in the News” December 19, 2008
  • The Lawyers Weekly “Resolving termination disputes by summary judgment” May 22, 2009
  • The Canadian Employer “ask an expert”, February 2008
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, Issue 534 “No room for funny business”
  • Canadian Employment Law Today, Issue 541 “Job posting unreasonable step” Canadian Employment Law Today, Issue 525 “Squeaky wheel gets released”
  • Toronto Star “Worries follow rise of Facebook” May 4, 2007

Daniel can be reached at

Sample of articles written by Daniel Lublin, as the Globe and Mail’s Workplace Legal Expert

Is your employment lawyer the real deal?

Things to look out for when finding and hiring the right employment lawyer for yourself.

The ins and outs of job severance

Some common misconceptions about severance packages and the dismissal by your employer.

Can my employer force me to sign a non-compete or non-solicitation clause?

Non-compete clauses are often considered excessive and are rarely upheld, but non-solicitation agreements are a different story.

What to do when your position is eliminated

You may have a claim for constructive dismissal if your employer changes your job in any significant way, including changed hours of work, reduction in compensation, changed responsibilities, and changed work location.

What are the rights of a worker on indefinite sick leave?

You cannot be fired because you are sick, but employees who do not work are not entitled to pay unless it is guaranteed in their employment contract.

Employment Contracts

The biggest mistake you can make when changing jobs is to agree to an unfavourable employment contract. Be on the lookout for probation, termination, contractual changes, non-solicitation, and non-compete clauses.

Do you need workplace legal advice?

Whitten & Lublin Employment and Labour Lawyers is a nationally recognized team, assisting employees in all aspects of workplace legal disputes. Don’t take a chance with your case. Consult the law firm with a team of proficient employment and labour law lawyers.

Whitten & Lublin Toronto Employment Lawyers

Toronto & GTA: (647) 946-1276

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