Constructive Dismissal

Constructive dismissal occurs when an employer unilaterally alters a term otherwise essential to the employment contract or evinces an intention not to be bound by an essential term of the employment contract, and as a result, the employment can be deemed terminated by the courts. This is a useful tool for employees seeking relief when the substance of their role as an employee is largely altered to their dissatisfaction and without reasonable notice.

At Zeilikman Law, we approach constructive dismissal issues with logical and creative solutions. Our lawyers are, professional, friendly, and determined. We have the know-how to navigate through the psychology of any given constructive dismissal dispute.

How to know if I have been constructively dismissed?

Constructive dismissal occurs in situations where the employee has not been formally terminated or fired, but rather where a term of the contract has been altered so fundamentally as to change the intent of the parties to the contract.

Constructive dismissal also occurs through the employer’s conduct, for example where an employee has been harassed, treated inappropriately and abusively, or experienced intolerable working conditions through workplace discrimination.

The changes to the contract need to be serious and cannot be minor. For example, such negative changes to the terms of the employment, made unilaterally by the employer without the employee’s consent, including changes to pay, location, responsibilities/duties, and working hours.

Constructive dismissal

How should I proceed based on my circumstances?

Before making any decisions on how to proceed, it is always best to speak to an experienced constructive dismissal lawyer to help provide you with the right direction. When dealing with a constructive dismissal, it is important that the employee acts on these changes promptly, to ensure that their actions are not seen as “acceptance” to the changes.

If an employee continues to report to work, without making it clear that he/she does not accept the changes to terms of employment, this can be construed as acceptance of these changes. Where an employee does not take steps to reject or oppose an amendment to the terms of employment, this may result in the employee later losing his or her right to claim constructive dismissal. Otherwise, an employee is free to end their employment and commence an action against their former employer.

How can Zeilikman Law help?

Each individual’s situation will be unique. To assess whether you have been constructively dismissed, contact one of our experienced lawyers today to set up a consultation to discuss your options and next steps.

Request a consultation today!

Legal Receptionist

Zeilikman Law is an employment law firm located in Vaughan, Ontario. We are looking to hire a legal receptionist to join our firm. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience working as a receptionist at another law firm.

Location: Vaughan, Ontario.

Start Date: Immediately.

Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm. Full time. In-person only. This is not a remote work position.

Wages: 35,000 to 40,000 per year.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Manage our firm’s multi-line telephone system to receive incoming calls.  Screen incoming telephone call inquiries to determine the nature of the telephone call and provide standard information related to our legal services.  Take and deliver messages and route incoming telephone calls to the appropriate staff person.
  • Answer general inquiries coming from the firm’s social media and website email.
  • Welcome in-person visitors upon arrival.  Direct visitors to the appropriate staff person and / or office or boardroom.
  • Organize in-person visitor schedule to prevent overlap and multiple bookings.
  • Receive, sort, and distribute daily mail and deliveries.
  • Arrange for couriers.
  • Keep front reception, kitchenette area and boardroom tidy.
  • Perform various clerical duties such as filing, photocopying, and faxing on an as-needed basis.
  • Process client or other payments.
  • May be asked to run minor errands outside of office such as attending post office to arrange a courier or pick up mail.
  • May be asked to assist other law clerks or lawyers of the firm as required and as appropriate.
  • Any other basic administrative duties or tasks as deemed appropriate.

Required Skills:

  • Basic knowledge of general office procedures including filing, faxing, and printing and copying.
  • Basic word processing computer skills.
  • Proficient in receptionist and telephone practices, etiquette, and decorum.
  • Professional attitude and appearance.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Positive customer service attitude is a must.
  • Must be able to maintain confidential and sensitive information.

Education and Experience:

  • Highschool diploma or equivalent.
  • 1 – 2 years’ experience in an office setting with an emphasis in accounting, reception or clerical work is required.   We would prefer experience in a law firm environment.

Applications for this position should be sent via email to jennifer@zeilikmanlaw.com. All applications should include a cover letter, resume and at least two references. Only successful candidates will be contacted.