KerrLaw Logo JAMES D. L. KERR
TO:           Business Clients FROM:  James D.L. Kerr Lawyer
            17 – 151 Merton St.            
, Ont., M4S 1A7
            Tel 416 485-4254
            Fax 416 485-8836

            Certified Specialist Civil Litigation
DATE:      September 15, 2003

I recommend that when terminating an employee’s employment with “just cause” (see my Client Memo on Employment Law posted at my web site – click on “Client Memos”), employers adhere to the following (with such variation as is necessitated by the circumstances of the particular termination):

1.                Meet with the employee.

2.                Do not meet with the employee alone but have, in attendance, a third person who will be able to confirm the events.

3.                At the meeting, present the termination letter to the employee and advise the employee, that his/her employment is being terminated for cause and that the particulars of the cause are set out in the letter.

4.                Allow the employee a reasonable opportunity to review and consider the contents of letter.

5.                If the employee wishes to offer an explanation, allow the employee to do so and give reasonable consideration to the employee’s response.

6.                If, notwithstanding the employee’s explanation, you determine to proceed with the termination, do not allow yourself to be drawn into a discussion as to the merits of the decision to terminate.

7.                Do not be unduly harsh with the employee in the context of the termination. Harsh conduct by an employer at the time of termination can lead to so-called "bad faith" damages.

8.                Permit the employee to return to his/her desk or workstation to retrieve personal effects, but only under supervision. In the alternative, advise the employee to call you at some future time to make arrangements to retrieve personal effects.

9.                Escort the employee off the premises under supervision but with the least fanfare; try to avoid embarrassing the employee in front of co-workers.

10.           If the employee has any company property in his/her possession, remember to obtain return of that property.


DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to be a comprehensive guide to the applicable law. General Client Memoranda and mailings from James D.L. Kerr ● Lawyer are intended to inform clients and acquaintances with respect to current issues that may be of interest to them. Memos are current to the date shown on the Memo. The law is constantly changing, however, and for that reason a Memo may not be completely accurate after it's stated date. Where circumstances warrant, the advice of a lawyer or other qualified professional should be obtained.

2005 James D.L. Kerr