Can a Change in Job Duties Lead to Constructive Dismissal?

Job Duties Lead to Constructive Dismissal

Changing an employee’s job duties may not be a direct breach of an employment contract, but it can lead to constructive dismissal if the employer does so without providing reasonable notice or justification. If you feel that your employer’s actions have made your work environment intolerable, a Toronto employment lawyer can help you understand whether you have a case to claim constructive dismissal and can provide you with legal advice on how to proceed.

Most people think of a change in job duties as a potential sign of a constructive dismissal, but the courts have also found that even small changes can have a significant impact on an employee’s work environment. This includes a reduction in salary, a change to commissions or bonuses, geographic transfers and loss of title and authority. Even a change to shift hours from day to night can be considered a constructive dismissal if the original employment contract states that the employee’s shifts are to occur during the day.

The court determines if an employee has been constructively dismissed by looking at the subjective feelings of the individual and what they would reasonably expect in their situation. If you find that your working conditions have become intolerable, a Toronto employment lawyer could help you file a lawsuit for wrongful termination and recover damages.

In one example, a municipal worker was transferred to a different department with the same title and remuneration after 20 years of service. The new position required a significant increase in administrative tasks that did not require her skills, including writing Requests for Proposals for traffic initiatives. She found the increased administrative work “humiliating and demeaning” and quit, claiming constructive dismissal.

Can a Change in Job Duties Lead to Constructive Dismissal?

It is important for employees to document any incidents that they believe may constitute a constructive dismissal in order to have proof of the issue. Documenting each incident, including the date and time of each event and any names or witnesses involved, can help ensure that all relevant details are considered when deciding whether you have a case to claim constructive termination.

Taking immediate action is critical to protecting your rights and finding the best solution for your situation. A knowledgeable and experienced Toronto employment lawyer could guide you through the process of determining if you have a case for constructive dismissal, negotiate with your employer to find a suitable resolution or take legal action if necessary.

Workers are protected by various workplace laws, such as whistleblower protection, anti-retaliation and contract law. The law does not require that employers treat their employees fairly or provide a stress-free environment, but it does protect workers who report illegal activities, sexual harassment and workplace safety violations.

If you believe that your employer has breached these laws, it is important to speak with an employment lawyer as soon as possible. A skilled and knowledgeable attorney could provide guidance on your legal options and help you file a lawsuit against your employer to recover compensation for damages.

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