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There are a lot of emotions to work through if you’ve been let go or laid off, but once you come to accept that everything happens for a reason and move on, this change could signify some new and exciting opportunities for your future.  

Now you can re-invent yourself, look for a truly fulfilling job, and maybe begin a new career! However, before embarking on your new journey you have to tie off any loose ends and make sure you’re giving yourself the best start possible to your new life. 

Keep reading for information on how you can ensure that when you close the door on your previous job, you’re not shutting out any compensation you’re entitled to that can help you start your new life off on the right foot. 

Get the Closure You Need 

If you’ve been let go, you can’t afford to leave money on the table. Before making any big decisions, you may want to consult an employment lawyer to make sure you’ve been given everything you’re entitled to in your severance package and that you weren’t wrongfully dismissed. Even if you were dismissed with cause, you have rights that need to be protected. You also want to make sure you’re not starting a new job that violates the terms of your last employment contract.

Despite what you might have heard, seeking legal advice doesn’t have to break the bank.  Law firms, like Ertl Lawyers, offer a free consultation over the phone and have fair and flexible rates like contingency fees, which means you don’t have to pay legal fees unless they increase your severance package.

This way you have nothing to lose by booking a consultation, and you can trust that they’re not just telling you what you want to hear. They won’t take your case unless they feel they can get you more compensation.

What You May Be Entitled To

Depending on the work you do and the industry you’re in, different types of compensation can be included in your severance package. Some forms of compensation include: 

  • Salary
  • Commissions
  • Benefits and RRSP contributions
  • Bonuses
  • Pension entitlements
  • Career counselling/training/help finding new work

Your severance can be paid to you in a few ways:

  • Lump-sum payment
  • Contribution to an RRSP
  • Salary continuance

How you choose to receive your severance, however, has tax implications. You’ll want to check with the Government of Canada to know how your severance can affect your taxable income. You may also want to check with the Government of Ontario’s website to see how severance is calculated.

Don’t Wait too Long

You have up to two years from the end of employment to start a claim against a former employer. It is important, however, to consult a lawyer as quickly as possible – before you sign off on a severance offer, if possible – because there are benefits to starting the process sooner rather than later.

These advantages can include: assistance in taking the necessary steps to avoid any negative impacts on your case, your memory of events is fresh, you have immediate or easier access to documents and the sooner you start the faster it can be resolved, which means you’ll get your severance payment quicker. 

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