Canadian Employment Law Today

September 13, 2017

Focuses on human resources law from a business perspective, featuring news and cases from the courts, in-depth articles on legal trends and insights from top employment lawyers across Canada.

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PM40065782 Emplo y ment Law Today Canad ad a ian www.employmentlawtoday.com September 13, 2017 Clear language in termination clause snuff s out worker's claim for common law notice AN ALBERTA court has dismissed a ter- minated worker's claim for additional sever- ance pay and notice because of a termination clause in his contract that clearly limited his entitlement to the legislative minimums. Michael Nutting started working for Franklin Templeton Investments Corpora- tion (FTIC) in December 2009. He had an employment contract that included a termi- nation provision stating that "your employ- ment may be terminated at any time with- out cause upon the provision by FTIC of the minimum notice of termination, or pay in lieu of notice, benefi ts and, if applicable, sev- erance pay prescribed by applicable employ- ment standards legislation in the province in which you are employed." e contract went on to stipulate that providing such notice or pay in lieu of would constitute "full and fi - nal satisfaction of all rights or entitlements which you may have arising from or related to the termination of your employment." In addition to the termination clause, Nut- ting's employment contract included a note that it and his off er letter "collectively com- prise all of the terms of your employment with FTIC" and he acknowledged as such. On April 12, 2012, FTIC terminated Nut- ting's employment after almost two-and- one-half years. e company provided him with the amount of pay in lieu of notice required by the Alberta Employment Stan- dards Code — two weeks' notice for employ- ees with service of more than two years but less than four years. Nutting fi led a claim for additional com- pensation, arguing he was entitled to ad- ditional severance pay because his em- ployment contract didn't eliminate his entitlement to common law reasonable notice of dismissal. He also claimed dam- ages for intentional infl iction of emotional distress, loss of reputation, expenses in se- Offi ce workers casualties of political infi ghting First Nations band's workers sent home during power struggle; dismissal was punishment for not supporting faction of councillors who took over: Adjudicator BY JEFFREY R. SMITH A SASKATCHEWAN First Nations band must pay two former offi ce workers more than $150,000 total for unjustly dismissing them during a period of political infi ghting among the band's leadership. Nicole Sylvestre and Cheryl Benjamin worked for the Buff alo River Dene First Nation band (BRDN) in northwestern Sas- katchewan. Sylvestre was hired in October 2001 and was a fi nance clerk in the band of- fi ce, while Benjamin was hired in April 2013 as a receptionist in the band offi ce. Both were members of the band. In early 2014, BRDN was in a state of turmoil. One of the band councillors was charged with two counts of assault — on another councillor and on a band employee — as well as uttering a death threat against the band manager. All of these incidents happened at the band offi ce, where both CREDIT: SIRTRAVELALOT/SHUTTERSTOCK Dismissal itself is not unfair pg. 3 Unfairness or bad faith in manner of dismissal is required to receive an award of aggravated damages Ontario's AODA progress pg. 4 Report suggests employers are making good progress towards compliance with accessibility legislation, but how it will be enforced is still uncertain with Tim Mitchell WORKERS on page 6 » CONTRACT on page 7 » ASK AN EXPERT pg. 2 Employee's refusal to work for safety reasons

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