Ana Kraljevic Law Firm

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I have just ben fired. My employer is requesting that I sign a release by a certain deadline. Do I have to respond by then?

Employers will frequently provide a tight deadline in which to accept a termination package in the hopes that this will dissuade ex-employees from commencing a lawsuit. It is important to know that this deadline is only contractual and that the employer’s legal obligations still apply: the employer must pay wages equivalent to the minimum notice period pursuant to the Employment Standards Act. The deadline is a pressure tactic that is intended to benefit only the employer who is hoping that you will accept it and they will not have to defend themselves against a lawsuit if you decide to pursue all of the entitlements that you are owed. Almost without exception, the employer will offer less than what an employee is legally entitled to but more than what is prescribed by the Employment Standards Act. If you are concerned about the deadline you can always write to the employer and ask for an extension, highlighting that you need to time to seek legal advice. It should be expected that you would need adequate time to find a lawyer to review the agreement.

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