Your client may be reeling from the reality of losing their livelihood. There are also many legal issues related to losing a job. If your client experienced an issue at work, they should get legal help right away. There are deadlines to make some complaints against employers.
Information to collect from your client:
- Where was your client working? What was their job? How long was your client working there?
- What were the terms of their employment? Were they full-time, part-time, casual, day labour? How and what was your client paid? Are they part of a union?
- What led to the job loss? Did the employer say why they were ending employment? Were they fired for cause or laid off without cause? Did the employer give the client any documents?
- Did your client receive any termination pay or benefits? Did they sign a release?
- Was your client injured at work?
Potential legal issues:
- No termination pay --Employees may be eligible for termination notice or pay in lieu of notice. It depends on why your client lost their job, how long they worked there, and whether the job falls under Alberta’s Employment Standards Code.
- Wrong dismissal/termination -- Alberta’s Employment Standards Code sets out rules for terminating employment. A wrongful termination may also lead to an incorrect Record of Earnings (ROE), which may affect the employee’s ability to apply for Employment Insurance (EI).
- Discrimination -- Employers must not discriminate against employees based on protected grounds set out in the Alberta Human Rights Act. For example, employers must accommodate certain health and personal needs of employees, such as about physical disabilities, family status, religious beliefs, or mental health concerns. If your client experienced discrimination, they can make a complaint to the Alberta Human Rights Commission within one year of the incident.
- Free legal information from CPLEA about Alberta’s employment laws
- Workers’ Resource Centre – free legal help for Alberta workers
- Alberta Human Rights Commission – to make a complaint of discrimination
- Alberta Employment Standards Office – to make a complaint about non-compliance with Alberta’s minimum employment standards
- Workers’ Compensation Board – to report workplace injuries
- Alberta Occupational Health and Safety – to report health and safety issues at work