Impact of Employment Contracts on Your Rights at Termination


Understanding the impact of your employment contract on your rights at the time of termination is crucial for every employee. This knowledge not only empowers you to negotiate better terms at the outset of your employment but also protects your interests should your employment end. At Workplace Sage Legal, we are dedicated to helping you navigate these agreements with insight and care.

Importance of Employment Contracts

An employment contract outlines the terms of your employment, including your role, salary, benefits, and the conditions under which termination can occur. This document is foundational in determining your rights and obligations upon termination.

Key Components Impacting Termination Rights

1 Notice Periods and Severance Pay:

  • Contracts often specify the length of notice you are entitled to before termination or the severance pay you should receive. Many employers will try to limit your entitlement to reasonable notice at common law with a termination clause specifying that you will only receive your minimum entitlements under the Ontario Employment Standards Act. However 99% of these termination clauses are void and unenforceable, which means you have a right to reasonable notice. If you schedule a consultation with us, we can let you know if the termination clause is valid and what notice period you are entitled to upon termination.

2 Restrictive Covenants:

  • Non-compete and non-solicitation clauses can restrict your employment opportunities post-termination. Understanding these clauses is essential to assess their enforceability and impact on your career.
  • For non C-suite level employees hired after October 25, 2021, non-competition agreements are illegal pursuant to the Employment Standards Act.

Analyzing Your Contract

Review with Professionals:

  • Have your contract reviewed by an employment lawyer. This can help you understand your rights and potential vulnerabilities in the event of termination.

Negotiate Terms:

  • If possible, negotiate the terms of your contract before signing. Focus on improving severance provisions, clarifying causes for termination, and limiting restrictive covenants.

Action Steps If Facing Termination

  • Review Your Contract:
    Look at your contract for specific terms related to notice, severance, and cause for termination.
  • Document Everything:
    Keep records of all communications and documentation related to your termination.
  • Consult with a Lawyer:
    An employment lawyer can provide valuable guidance, assess your contract, and help negotiate or litigate your rights.


Your employment contract is a powerful tool that dictates your rights during termination. Understanding and negotiating its terms effectively can significantly enhance your protections and benefits if your employment ends. At Workplace Sage Legal, we ensure you have the support and expertise needed to navigate these complex issues confidently.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *