Legal Law

Can Constructive Dismissal Occur Due to Harassment Or Bullying?

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Constructive Dismissal

A constructive dismissal is a legal claim an employee can file against their employer after they resign due to their employer creating intolerable working conditions. It can be complex to identify when this situation arises and you should seek legal advice as soon as possible. An experienced employment lawyer will be able to help you determine whether your circumstances meet the requirements for a constructive termination or wrongful dismissal case.

The law in Canada states that an employee can bring a constructive dismissal claim when their employer has made significant changes to the terms of their employment, or has created a hostile or toxic work environment, and these conditions have forced them to resign. These factors may include a reduction in pay, change to work location or shift in responsibilities and duties, demotion, or a change to work hours.

An employer can also cause a constructive dismissal by creating intolerable working conditions when they allow harassment or bullying in the workplace. These could be actions such as refusing to address the issue, passing over an employee for promotion or retaliation against employees who report workplace issues or participate in investigations.

Can Constructive Dismissal Occur Due to Harassment Or Bullying?

Generally, a breach of the implied term of trust and confidence that exists in all contracts of employment can lead to a constructive dismissal. However, this doesn’t mean that an employer can create intolerable conditions and force you to resign. It’s important to note that you must notify management or someone in a position of authority about the conditions and they must have knowledge about the intolerable conditions or be responsible for them. If you don’t report these conditions, and they aren’t discovered independently, it would be difficult to prove your case.

In addition to the conditions discussed above, there are other factors that can make a workplace intolerable and force you to resign. These can include a lack of career advancement, the creation or maintenance of a workplace culture that is hostile to women or minorities, and an arbitrarily suspension or layoff.

You should document the incidents that you believe may be grounds for a constructive termination and consult with an employment lawyer as soon as possible. You should have documented evidence such as emails, phone messages, and notes from your manager or supervisor. This information will be crucial in building a strong case and ensuring you have the best chance of success.

It’s worth noting that if you are not able to successfully prove your claim for constructive dismissal, you will not be entitled to any payment from your former employer. Having a supportive lawyer can help you navigate these complicated situations and protect your rights.

Despite the stress of quitting your job, it’s a good idea to explore other career opportunities. If you’re considering seeking a new job, an experienced employment lawyer can advise you about your options and help you find the right role for you. You can also update your resume, reach out to your professional network, and look for positions that are in line with your skills and qualifications.

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