Employee who packed up and left after argument did not quit: Court

Employer followed up acrimonious meeting with email asking to confirm resignation date
|employmentlawtoday.com|Last Updated: 01/08/2013

A British Columbia winemaker acted too fast when it assumed an employee who packed up his belongings and left the workplace after an argument was quitting his job, the British Columbia Supreme Court has ruled.

The 38-year-old employee was a winemaker hired in 2008 by St. Hubertus Estate Winery, a winery near Kelowna, B.C. He was considered a good employee who achieved positive results from his efforts.

On Oct. 14, 2009, the winemaker decided to take the day off and emailed the owners. However, it was during a busy harvest time and the owners didn’t see the email until later in the day, so they were left wondering where he was in the morning. The winemaker was called into a meeting the next morning, where he took issue with being confronted with what happened. He claimed he felt underappreciated and became emotional.