Ridout Barron


When is termination for just cause a legal option?

Employers in Alberta have different options available when it comes to terminating employees, none of which are simple. Employment laws protect the rights of employees that include providing notice, paying notice pay, and more. There is also the option of termination without giving the employee any notice, but it requires compliance with certain regulations.

It is a good idea for any employer to make sure that employees are aware of rules in the workplace, and the consequences that could follow disregarding those regulations. It is also a good practice to keep records about any conversations regarding inappropriate conduct or behaviour. These records must include the date, time and the outcome of such encounters. Such documents will be required if an employee's misconduct leads to termination for just cause any time in the future.

For such a termination, the employer must be able to justify the dismissal. Dissatisfaction with an employee's performance is not enough to justify termination without notice. The employer must demonstrate proof of real misconduct, incompetence or poor performance, and also evidence that the worker was informed of the steps that could be taken if he or she fails to perform duties in the required manner, or fails to obey specific rules.

This is a complicated issue and one which most employers in Alberta prefer to discuss with an experienced lawyer. Legal counsel with extensive experience in dealing with employment law issues can be an invaluable asset. It might be a good idea to discuss the matter with a lawyer before issuing a notice of termination for just cause.

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Ridout Barron

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