Alberta business laws mandate it for employers and employees to serve notice to each other to terminate employment.
Employers are often found at the crossroads with whether to terminate an employee or not. More so, the dilemma is intensified by the question – on what basis should the employment be terminated?
In Alberta, an employer can terminate the services of an employee on any grounds. Given that the grounds are not based on discrimination.
For example, an employer cannot terminate an employee based on their origin, race, colour, sexual orientation, and alike reasons.
When Can Employment Not Be Terminated?
In Alberta, the laws for employers to terminate their employees are not that simple. However, there are certain situations when they can and can not terminate the employment of an employee.
It might not be feasible to state when the termination is justified. However, business law practitioners can help understand when the termination is not justified. Here are some examples of when an employment termination is not acceptable.
- If the employee is on job-protected leave.
- If the employee is on maternity or parental leave.
- If the employee is facing garnishment action.
- If the employee is about to make a statement or give evidence about something under the Code.
- If the employee is demanding something that they are entitled to.
It is worth mentioning that the employer would need to either give a termination notice or termination pay to end the employment. The employer may also choose to provide a combination of both. However, this is only feasible if the employee has been working for more than 90 days with the employer.
Note: For seasonal or task-specific jobs, no notice or termination pay is needed.
How To Determine The Notice Period?
As mentioned already, for employment periods or 90 days or less, no notice is required. But, at the same time, the notice period may also vary.
In other words, the employment period generally determines the notice period that an employee must serve. Here are the details:
- For an employment period of more than ninety days but less than two years, the notice period is one week.
- If the employee has been working for more than two years but less than four years, the notice period is two weeks.
- For an employment period of more than four years but less than six years, the notice period is four weeks.
- The notice period is five weeks for an employment period ranging between six years to eight years.
- For an employment period of eight to ten years, the notice period is six weeks.
- If the employee has been working for more than ten years, the notice period is eight weeks.
It is noteworthy that the employment period is determined from the date of hiring and not joining. Besides, even if the ownership of the employing company changes, the employment period would remain the same.
Although the business laws in Alberta for termination of employment are pretty straightforward, there are always loops. It is better to consult with an experienced “corporate and labour lawyer.”