Fired in Alberta: Can I negotiate my Severance Offer
If you have been terminated, you have likely been provided with a time sensitive severance offer. We are often asked by employees if it is even possible to negotiate severance amounts. The answer really depends on the facts of your particular case.
Determining severance amounts is set out in more detail in our article here: https://www.flodenward.com/post/how-is-severance-calculated-in-alberta . We typically find, based on caselaw and facts, that likely severance will be in a range.
In rare cases we talk to an employee who has been given an offer right at the upper end of the range that they should. In those instances, we advise the employee to accept. Unfortunately this approach seems to be few and far between for employers.
In some cases, the offer is extremely low and nowhere within the range. Depending on the overall amount in issue, sometimes those situations are good to negotiate in.
Sometimes the offer is within an acceptable range but it is a lowball offer. Those cases can also be good files to negotiate on.
There can be other factors, such as bullying and manner of dismissal that can lead to escalated damages.
It is possible that the employer actually has cause to terminate you, and then negotiate. Some employer don't negotiate in good faith and negotiation goes nowhere. Other employers simply don't want to settle. In those instances you may find yourself having to sue.
So really, depending on your facts, sometimes it is advisable to negotiate, other times it is advisable to accept the offer, other times it is advisable to sue. It is worthwhile to speak to a lawyer to determine which choice fits your circumstances.
If you require advice on whether to accept your severance offer please feel free to contact us.
The information contained in this article is not legal advice. No solicitor client relationship is formed through this article. The reader is encouraged to retain counsel for advice in these matters.