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Legal Ease
Legal Ease, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
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Experience:  Lawyer
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I used to work guard company (x) at a hospital in Ontario,

Customer Question

I used to work for security guard company (x) at a hospital in Ontario, when they brought in a new security company (y) who had more experience in healthcare. I was approached by company (y)'s management team and soon enough was trained and hired on. I was hired as a level 3 guard and informed that would be my role and what my pay rate would be. Soon after company (y) took over the contract for the entire hospital. They said due to the circumstances they would put me down to a level 2 guard without changing my pay. Now I have different responsibilities and am being told that my pay is being reviewed. Can they do this?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  Legal Ease replied 1 year ago.

This would be considered to be a case of constructive dismissal.

When an employer does something that fundamentally changes the nature of the employment so that it drives the employee to quit, this may be a case of constructive dismissal. This is usually the case when the employer reduces wages, cuts hours etc. It is also the case where the employer's conduct makes it intolerable for the employee to continue working.

If an employee does quit under these circumstances then the law is that constructive dismissal is wrongful dismissal and the employer will be liable for damages.

If you are considering this option it is crucial that you first consult with an employment lawyer so that you can get a legal opinion from an expert both about whether the facts amount to constructive dismissal and, as well, about what damages you may be entitled to.

Generally the damages would be equal to what you would receive had you been dismissed without cause. If that had been the case you would have been entitled to receive "reasonable" notice or pay in lieu of notice.

Generally, in determining what is reasonable notice Courts look at several factors including the length of time you worked for the employer, your age, your position, the likelihood of finding new employment etc.

At the high end, if you were in a managerial position, the Court would likely order one month's notice or pay in lieu of notice for each year of employment. If you were not in a managerial position the Court would order somewhat less. However, in your case the damages would be higher because they lured you away from your former employer with promises of paying you a certain rate and with promises of a specific classification.

So your next step should be to consult with an employment lawyer face to face.

You can contact the Law Society and use their Lawyer Referral Service. You will be given the name of a lawyer and can consult with the lawyer and the first half hour will be free.

The number is:

1-***-***-**** or(###) ###-####(within the GTA)

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