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What Happens When You Get Laid Off

If you have recently been laid off, you may have questions about what happens next. Layoffs are common, yet not every employee fully understands their rights and entitlements once they have been laid off. Depending on your employment situation, you may be entitled to compensation when you are laid off or you may instead become eligible for government assistance benefits. It is important that you understand your rights as an employee to ensure you are adequately compensated after being laid off. See our frequently asked questions about layoffs below and be prepared to protect your rights as an employee in the event that you are laid off.

At Soni Law Firm, we are dedicated to helping employees understand and protect their rights. If you have been laid off and feel that your employer has not provided you with adequate compensation or the layoff is not due to economic concerns, we can help. Contact us today to discuss your unique situation. We are expert dismissal lawyers with a proven record of success and are ready to assist you at any stage of your dispute with your employer.

What Does Being Laid off Mean?

Being laid off means that you have been let go from your place of employment, though this does not mean that you have been fired. When you are laid off from your employment it is not a result of poor employee performance or any other reason that would be cause for termination. Instead, a layoff is often the result of a company restructuring, going out of business or when a business is facing economic strain. Some layoffs are permanent while others are temporary or even seasonal. It is important to remember that being laid off is not caused by anything you have personally done, and you are likely eligible for government support after you have been laid off.

Does Being Laid Off Guarantee I Will Be Rehired Later?

Sometimes layoffs are temporary but in many cases, layoffs are permanent and should be treated by the employee as such. In some cases, employers will choose to rehire laid-off workers once economic situations improve, but they are under no obligation to do so unless it has been agreed upon in an employment contract. Even if your employer begins hiring for your previous position after your lay off, you are not guaranteed to be rehired.

Are New Employees Always Laid Off First?

In the event that a company lays off employees, it is typical that new employees will be laid off first. If you are a senior employee and have been laid off before newer employees, it would be a good idea to consult with an employment lawyer. There are many factors that may affect when an employee gets laid off, but senior employees are generally not the first to be laid off. In any case, if you have spent some time with an employer and have been laid off you may be entitled to compensation. Employees with a long-standing relationship with their employer should consult with a severance lawyer to ensure they get a severance package that is fair.

Can I Dispute Being Laid Off?

If you have concerns that your lay off is not due to economic reasons and instead for reasons such as discrimination you may wish to consult with a human rights lawyer. Your employer will need to justify your layoff and cannot simply lay you off from your employment without reason. You may be able to dispute your layoff if you feel that it is dishonest or discriminatory in nature. If you feel you are a victim of discrimination in the workplace or otherwise need assistance after you have been laid off there is help available. Consider the experts at Soni Law Firm to represent you during your dispute with your employer. We are expert dismissal lawyers and termination lawyers and can assist you in understanding your rights and ensuring you are compensated appropriately after a layoff.

Do You Get Severance Pay When You are Laid Off?

When an employee is laid off, they are not guaranteed to be re-employed by their employer. In some cases, employees may be rehired after a layoff and in these cases, no severance pay would be required to be paid by the employer. When an employer lays off an employee for 35 weeks or more in a period of 52 consecutive weeks or the lay off takes place because a business has permanently closed, an employee may be entitled to severance pay.

Not every laid-off employee will qualify for severance pay. To qualify for severance pay an employee must have worked for an employer for five or more years and their employer has a payroll in Ontario of at least $2.5 million or the employer has severed the employment of 50 or more employees in a six-month period. For more information on severance pay and who qualifies for it, see our previous article “Understanding Severance Pay in Ontario.”

Can I Qualify for EI After Being Laid Off?

If you have been laid off from your employment, it is likely that you will qualify for employment insurance. As your employment has been terminated through no fault of your own, you would be entitled to this support. If you have been laid off and have had your employment insurance claim denied, it is a good idea to consult with an employment insurance lawyer. Employees who are terminated with cause and those who have resigned from their employment are not eligible for employment insurance benefits.

If you have questions about your layoff or are concerned that your employer may have breached your rights as an employee, reach out to the experts at Soni Law firm. We are here to help you ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve when it comes to being let go from your employment through layoffs, constructive dismissal, wrongful dismissal or any other scenario when your employment is terminated.

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About Post Author


Rahul founded Soni Law Firm, a boutique employment, labour, and human rights law firm, with the goal of taking his Downtown Toronto litigation experience and making it accessible to Ontario’s Main Street employees and employers.