Legal flip-flop

In some cases an employer can terminate an employee without cause – and then later take the position it had cause
By Stuart Rudner
|Canadian Employment Law Today

Can an employer terminate an employee on a without-cause basis, and then subsequently take the position that it had just cause for termination?

Although it may seem counter-intuitive, the fact is the law in Canada allows an employer to do so in many cases. That is particularly true where the evidence is the employer only chose to proceed on a without-cause basis initially in order to spare the feelings or reputation of the employee in question.

In that context, allowing the employer to change its position is reasonable. A company should be allowed to proceed on a goodwill basis at the time of termination without prejudicing its rights if the employee subsequently decides to go to court.