Companies who handle their own human resources issues without first obtaining legal advice usually regret it. One misstep with the wrong employee and your company could be facing a lengthy and expensive lawsuit or human rights application that will drain corporate profits and ruin your company’s reputation.
I am a subject matter expert in Employment Law and have for the past three decades, guided companies with all facets of their human resources planning and implementation to reduce or eliminate risk of financial and reputational harm. My corporate clients let me handle their human resources issues while they concentrate on running their companies.
Companies that retain me will be guided by a lawyer with three decades of experience that is infused with wisdom, practicality and strategic thinking. My experience as a Small Claim Court judge (part-time) along with being a mediator, is also a value-add for my employer clients as they navigate shark-filled waters with their employees.
On-boarding an Employee
Prudent employers have their new employees sign an employment agreement or offer letter. How and when an agreement is introduced is also critical to ensure its enforceability. When I assist a company with pre-hire documentation and instructions on how and when to introduce an employment agreement, the entire hiring process runs much more smoothly, especially at the end of the employment relationship.
My employer clients complete a form about the position into which they are hiring. I then create a simple employment contract or agreement that covers the four most important aspects to every agreement:
Eliminating litigation with an existing or former employee
There are a myriad of ways in which companies make costly errors when dealing with their employees. Having worked for decades with employees, I know how they think and why they seek legal advice. I use that information to guide companies into conducting themselves not only according to the law but in a way that will reduce or even eliminate the risk of an employee running off to a lawyer.
The issues that your company will need my advice on include:
Properly handling an employee’s leave of absence (stress, illness, bereavement, maternity etc.)
Performance Management issues
Changing a term of the employment agreement
Preventing and responding to a complaint of workplace harassment, bullying, abuse, sexual harassment or violence (mandatory)
Anti-harassment training (mandatory)
Creation of Anti-harassment policies and procedures (mandatory)
Conducting workplace investigations
Performance Improvement Plans
Termination of employment (with or without cause)
Human Rights complaints
Management training on HR requirements
Mediating disputes at your workplaces to preserve working relationships
As a mediator, I can work with you and your employee to help resolve problems at the workplace before the parties become polarized. Workplace remediation greatly reduces the risk that that employee will simply leave and sue your company. Workplace remediation is a great way to keep everyone engaged and working towards the success of your company.
At the End of Employment
Our courts recognize that there is no more vulnerable position for an employee than when his or her employment is being terminated. Because of that vulnerability, our courts are protective of employees. Employers who engage in bad faith conduct around the termination will find themselves being assessed extra damages at trial.
Once again, I instruct my employer-clients on the amount of severance that is needed, whether severance is payable, how to conduct a termination interview and what sort of conduct should be avoided when terminating employment. Please do not attempt to terminate employment without getting my advice first.
Sometimes, a former employer begins to engage in corporate raiding of your customers and/or employees. Enforcing your right to protect your proprietary information and relationships is sometimes required. If you are in that situation, please call me to discuss your options.
Types of Representation
Although most of my files settle through negotiation, I am skilled at all aspects of litigation and mediation where either are necessary. If you are served with a lawyer’s letter from a departing employee, a Statement of Claim, a Human Rights Application or any other formal legal process, please call me right away.
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Oakville Employment Lawyer subject matter expert in HR consulting, workplace investigations, all employee concerns, mediation. Cost-effective, client-centred, practical legal advice, guidance and representation.