The Law of Quitting your Job

There are several legal issues to consider whenever an employee resigns (i.e. quits his or her job):

(1) Some employees must give notice before quitting. If not, it could be a “wrongful resignation”. Before quitting, employees should check their employment contract. Most employment contracts require two weeks notice, but more senior, managerial or executive employees usually have to give much more notice. Note that there is no law requiring an employee to give notice of resignation. An employee’s requirement to give notice comes from an employment contract only.

(2) Most employees who quit are not entitled to any termination pay, severance or employment insurance (“EI”).

(3) Some employers may be able to claim “constructive dismissal” and get termination pay, severance and EI even though they quit. This happens if an employer breaches the employment contract, makes a demotion, or maintains a toxic work environment.

(4) Sometimes a resignation is not really a resignation. The law recognizes that employees are entitled to take back such an important decision made in the heat of passion. This means that if you quit, and it wasn’t a real resignation, and you act quickly to recoup your job, you must be given your job back or provided termination pay in lieu.

(5) Some employees can be prevented from doing certain things after quitting, including abiding by the following restrictive covenants contained in some employment contracts:

  • non-compete;
  • non-solicitation; and
  • non-disclosure.
Dutton Employment Law is a resignation law firm

If you want to quit your job, take back the job you quit, or are concerned about your restrictive covenant duties, contact a Toronto resignation lawyer today.