Court awards Wallace damages after fitness club fires employee without severance or notice

Club said she was a part-time employee because part of her duties included independent personal training
|Canadian Employment Law Today

A worker at a fitness club was wrongfully dismissed and is entitled to extra damages due to the way she was dismissed, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has ruled.

Sharon Budhram worked in several capacities at multiple locations of Fit for Life and Women in Motion health clubs. She usually worked three days a week selling club memberships and occasionally taught fitness classes and performed personal training at night. She was paid on an hourly basis when selling memberships and separately when teaching classes or doing personal training.

On May 28, 2003, Budhram was terminated without cause or notice. Fit for Life argued she was a part-time employee paid by the hour and her night work was as an independent contractor, so she wasn’t entitled to severance or notice. It also claimed she had committed fraud by falsifying records of personal training sessions by initaling incomplete sessions after she was terminated.