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Laid off after 13 years Employment- Severance info?

  • Last Updated:
  • May 11th, 2019 2:40 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
User avatar
Oct 18, 2009
160 posts
79 upvotes
Toronto, ON

Laid off after 13 years Employment- Severance info?

Hi everyone.
I work for a Canadian company which employees about 4000 workers in GTA area. I worked as a Senior technical person capacity (full time Salary employment) for the past 13 years.

Due to some restructuring, the situation at this company I was laid off yesterday with 5 months severance package. My health benefits will continue till Oct 2018.
I'd like to understand based on these facts, how much I would be entitled to. I do a specialized kind of work and currently the opportunities in my filed are almost none in Canada. Everything outsourced to Asia.
I am 47 years of age and my Salary is >$90K annually basis.

Any information you can provide or share will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks
Last edited by cooltoronto on Feb 28th, 2018 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
68 replies
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
12281 posts
6843 upvotes
Brampton
You should really consult a employment lawyer. They have a 30min free consultation.

The idea of severance is viewed in many cases as "gap pay" till you get you find another job vs the idea of a pay out based on years of service. So your employer is thinking you'll find another job in less than 5 months.
But the rule of thumb of a month per year of service generally applies.

Here's some articles for you.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/report- ... e29785537/

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/report- ... le4098859/
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 9, 2007
13964 posts
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Think of the Childre…
14 years and only 5 months severance? Hmmm not good.

WOULD SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!
Banned
May 17, 2005
4845 posts
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tebore wrote: You should really consult a employment lawyer.
...
agree , also is it a lump sum ? do you have to give it back if you find a job sooner then the 5 months ?
Deal Fanatic
Mar 15, 2005
5489 posts
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My friend at RBC with just shy of 10 years service was given 11 months + a pro-rated portion of their average annual bonus of the past few years.
Deal Fanatic
May 31, 2007
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jsquared21 wrote: There is an employment lawyer that usually comes on AM640. From what I hear, you should received one month severance for each year you worked there. So you should received 14 months of severance.

http://www.severancepaycalculator.com/o ... alculator/
http://www.employmenthour.com/
I really like this guy. He also said it depends on previous case law. You should be able to get around 100k

I hope op didn't sign any paper.

Employers always offer low amount because they expect most will accept and walk. most don't know you usually get way more with lawyer.
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 27, 2009
7398 posts
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Victoria, BC
Don't sign off on anything. See a lawyer. Your age and the fact that you won't likely be re-employed in the same capacity plays into how much you can get. I usually hate to recommend employment lawyers because I view them much like ambulance chasers (usually will take a big percentage of your award), but in this case maybe you can just hire one to write a "threatening" letter to your employer and you might see some results.
Deal Addict
Nov 11, 2006
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Make sure you don’t sign with a lawyer that charges % of award. Make sure you find a lawyer who charges an hourly rate only.
Banned
May 17, 2005
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CanRulez wrote: Make sure you don’t sign with a lawyer that charges % of award. Make sure you find a lawyer who charges an hourly rate only.
how much do they usually take ?
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 27, 2009
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lubmar wrote: how much do they usually take ?
I don't really know if there is a "usual", but if they work on contingency I think it is at least 25% (and probably more). You might be able to get someone to just draft up a letter for you for a reasonable rate and maybe that will be enough to spur your employer on to sweeten their deal.
Deal Addict
Oct 18, 2004
4844 posts
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Wat
Sorry to hear about the layoff, I've been through similar (14 years and change) and it was devastating.
If you want to compare, I got 3 weeks per every year of service and full benefits for 2 months.
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Dec 27, 2009
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Jungle wrote: I really like this guy. He also said it depends on previous case law. You should be able to get around 100k

I hope op didn't sign any paper.

Employers always offer low amount because they expect most will accept and walk. most don't know you usually get way more with lawyer.
Maybe true with a big business, but for our firm it would be a killer having to pay out that kind of money to someone. OP works for a company of 4000 employees, so yes they should be able to give a much better severance.
Deal Addict
Apr 21, 2014
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Wiseman wrote: Sorry to hear about the layoff, I've been through similar (14 years and change) and it was devastating.
If you want to compare, I got 3 weeks per every year of service and full benefits for 2 months.
Just for comparison purposes the above poster got almost 10 months of severance, so double the OP’s offer.

OP I would say something in the 10-12 months range is appropriate. 5 months is an insult, which is 21.5 weeks (4.3 weeks in a month). That’s like 1.5 weeks per year of service!!! Total garbage. 3-4 weeks per year is reasonable.

Get an employment lawyer ASAP to draft a demand letter. The employment lawyer I used actually got the company to pay for her services. My company’s final offer included paying 2k for legal services directly to the lawyer. I didn’t pay anything and got my retainer back.
Jr. Member
Jan 11, 2017
121 posts
40 upvotes
OP. Having gone through a similar situtation (26yrs with a multi-national company though) it was well worth engaging legal council in the end. The delta between first and final offer was substantial and would not have been possible without council. PM if you'd like the name of the lawyer I went through. She's in Ottawa, but that don't matter. I would consult with more than one lawyer.
Last edited by hdjunkie on Feb 28th, 2018 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Fanatic
May 31, 2007
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Chickinvic wrote: Maybe true with a big business, but for our firm it would be a killer having to pay out that kind of money to someone. OP works for a company of 4000 employees, so yes they should be able to give a much better severance.
using that calculator it's saying op is Entitled between $120,000 and $135,000

I would be contacting that lawyer asap, I listen to him all the time and he seems very good.

How that would work with small firm I'm not sure, but he has 4000 employees (not small business)

Also when companies restructure, they do factor cost of severance pay, there is a legal minimum but with layer you get more because of previous court cases won and standards set.

From talking to many people in my circle nobody is even aware this right exist so I'm assuming most people probably just accept low ball offer and walk, most in a state of shock and will take the money. So company gets away with it.

Op if you get 6 figures remember it's all reported as taxable income. Save a portion for taxes.
Jr. Member
Jan 11, 2017
121 posts
40 upvotes
Jungle wrote: using that calculator it's saying op is Entitled between $120,000 and $135,000

I would be contacting that lawyer asap, I listen to him all the time and he seems very good.

How that would work with small firm I'm not sure, but he has 4000 employees (not small business)

Also when companies restructure, they do factor cost of severance pay, there is a legal minimum but with layer you get more because of previous court cases won and standards set.

From talking to many people in my circle nobody is even aware this right exist so I'm assuming most people probably just accept low ball offer and walk, most in a state of shock and will take the money. So company gets away with it.

Op if you get 6 figures remember it's all reported as taxable income. Save a portion for taxes.
Indeed.. it's hard to hide from CRA if one doesn't have sufficient RRSP room.
[OP]
Jr. Member
User avatar
Oct 18, 2009
160 posts
79 upvotes
Toronto, ON
Thanks for your replies Guys! I really appreciate support here. I called /emailed few lawyers within GTA including Lior Samfiru and waiting for responses. I am meeting one on Friday.

Please PM me the info of the lawyers if anyone has used their services and fees etc .

Thanks
Last edited by cooltoronto on Feb 28th, 2018 6:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Member
Feb 8, 2017
459 posts
258 upvotes
get 13 months minimum, try to get salary continuance and not a lump sum payment, no conditions on paying any severance back if you get another job during severance pay period, full benefits for severance period, since your severance will go into 2019 factor in what your full year 2018 bonus would have been and get that included in your severance package. i'm sure there is more that a lawyer can tell you about but this is just off the top of my head.
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2013
3493 posts
1260 upvotes
Woodbridge
aubgray1 wrote: ance and not a lump sum payment, no conditions on paying any severance back if you get another job during severance pay period, full benefits for severance period,
Might also be worth try to negotiate a longer period than you're entitled to in exchange for clauses that cap or end the payment if/when you get another comparable job. Again, this is all work for a lawyer. Good luck!

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