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5. Suing Your Employer

You can try to sue your employer for breaching your employment contract.  For example, if you worked six years, most provincial employment standards legislation suggests that you should get at least six weeks' notice or pay – but you may be entitled to much more.  Courts have awarded between 9 and 18 months’ severance pay in many cases.  Very senior and long-serving executives have received up to two years’ severance pay. 

However, keep in mind that if you sue your employer, you risk damaging sources of references, contacts, and other sources of work referrals. You could also lose your lawsuit. If you lose, you will have to pay legal fees to your lawyer and your employer’s lawyer. You will also be putting significant time and energy into the lawsuit rather than looking for your next opportunity.

As you can see, the decision to sue your employer is not one you should take lightly. That said, in some cases the discrepancy between a fair settlement and what your employer offers may be so large as to require a significant response from you. In those cases, you may need to sue them.



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