Employment & Labour

Setting departure terms in contract can lessen disruption

When a top employee resigns, it’s sure to interrupt the flow in any company, but one way to quell some of the disruption is to have clear departure terms set out in the employment contract, Toronto employment lawyer Doug MacLeod tells Lawyers Weekly.

“The courts have said you’ve got to give your employer reasonable notice of resignation but reasonable people can disagree on what’s reasonable. To eliminate that uncertainty, I suggest employers have a clause in the (employment contract) that says how much notice an employee has to give,” he says in the article.

“You can manage the process. Through the employment contract, you can spell out that the employee has to give so many weeks of notice and further, that they can’t tell their clients that they’re leaving until (the firm) does. The firm would have the first opportunity to talk to the clients and try to convince them that there are other lawyers at the firm who can service their needs,” MacLeod, principal at MacLeod Law Firm, tells Lawyers Weekly.

The contract should also include a clause that requires the employee to return all company property and any client files that they may have out-of-office, he adds.

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