Have you ever given up your seat on the subway or held the door open for a disabled person? Society upholds these values of goodwill, generosity and honesty. Should your employer not follow the same standards of fair play?
Our Team of Employment Lawyers Believe They Should
As Principal of Lecker & Associates, Bram Lecker is one of the most experienced employment lawyers in Toronto and consistently ranked among the top three in Toronto. He actively plays a role in all client cases primarily as a mentor and steady hand to his stellar team.
Andrew Jenssen: “From day one Bram Lecker put me at ease during what was a very stressful time. Matthew Fisher was clear and confident from the outset, never hesitating or waivering for a moment in his belief and certainty on how to handle my situation. He did a truly wonderful job looking after me. Then there was Eslita who was just plain wonderful at keeping me up to date every step of the way. I have been more than satisfied. Especially when I consider that two of the other firms I considered during my research, prior to making my decision to ultimately go with Lecker, did not even want to take on my case. Well done and thank you to a great team.”
A seasoned litigator and Partner, Matthew Fisher comes with a reputation of excellence in employment law. Taking the lead in precedent setting cases, he has clarified laws which previously remained ambiguous.
If you’ve had your disability benefits denied, Ian Hurley is the employment lawyer you want on your side. His vast experience spans wrongful dismissal as well as disputes related to workplace accommodation following sick leave.
A staunch defender of employee rights including workplace harassment and toxic workplace disputes, Maria Esmatyar is multilingual, well traveled and able to represent a diverse client base. She is also a keen writer, regularly contributing to our blogs.
Jordan Reiner is uniquely skilled in demystifying legal jargon. He takes the lead on counselling clients with their employment contract negotiations and aggressively advocates for them against human rights violations, wrongful & constructive dismissals.
Jared Lecker is a fierce employee’s advocate. He is supportive when counseling clients with their employment contract negotiations and meticulously argues for them against human rights violations, wrongful & constructive dismissal.
Kimberley Sebag is a strong and confident communicator with the ability to set clients at ease from the onset. Her practice focuses on defending the rights of employees including harassment, sexual assault as well as wrongful dismissal.
Simon Pelsmakher articled with Lecker & Associates before joining the firm. He has a strong passion for defending employee rights. Fluent in English and Russian, Simon represents clients in wrongful dismissal, contract negotiations and human rights violations.
Brooke Auld’s passion for employment law was honed while engaged in policy advisory work at Ontario’s Ministry of Labour. Her practice includes advocating for employees in disputes against their employers in wrongful dismissal, constructive dismissal and workplace harassment.
Caroline Ursulak has practiced labour law since 1997. She has successfully negotiated severance & notice disputes, litigated wrongful and constructive dismissal cases and advises client in all areas of employment law
Sandi Chan: “Highly recommended for anyone questioning whether they are receiving a fair severance when leaving an employer. They communicate expectations and timelines from the start and ensure that all of your questions and requests are responded to in timely manner. More importantly, they delivered on the results expected!”
Syed Hassan: “Stellar legal advice and consultation provided to me by Jared helped me understand my legal rights and possible future legal actions I could take and outcomes, regarding a workplace human rights violation involving retaliation against free speech and a complicated Independent contract with one of Ontario’s biggest corporations. Very happy that I was able to get truly in depth professional advice focusing on all socioeconomic aspects of the case.”
We Aggressively Represent Employees
Unlike many firms, our Toronto Employment lawyers have a singular focus. We provide employment law services to Ontario workers and operate with deep expertise in this field.
Our employment lawyers regularly litigate precedent setting cases, adding clarity to laws which previously remained open to interpretation. Our cases have directly influenced laws drafted to protect human and employee rights.
Toronto Employment Lawyers
Our specialty includes any area of employment and disability benefits law, such as wrongful dismissal, job layoffs, severance and notice calculations, denied disability benefits, constructive dismissal, disputes following maternity leave and illness leaves along with harassment and human rights abuses, to name a few.
With 35+ years of experience under our belt, we aggressively advocate for you. Our first order of duty is to take care of your stress and address the challenges you face with your employer, head-on. When we take on your case, we represent your best interest,and nothing else.
Every case we manage is unique and distinctive to the circumstances of the client. But we see a common theme in all. Our clients lack knowledge about their rights as employees. Let’s change this to level the playing field.
Employees applying for jobs at Canadian subsidiaries of U.S. corporations should review their employment contracts closely. We often find at will termination clauses which supposedly allow employers to fire employees without notice. First of all, our laws completely prohibit such clauses . In this matter, there is little room for a Canadian employer to maneuver. They must offer notice or severance pay in lieu to employees. If you must sign such a contract to land the job, consult with one of our lawyers. In almost all cases, our courts will consider the clause void when taken to trial.
You remain an employee of the company when you are on disability leave or parental leave. You may return to your original or one comparable to it. Your employer cannot fire you for being on leave. And if they do, then they must prove that it was for reasons unconnected to your leave. Our courts will demand evidence and the bar is set very high, indeed.
If your leave extends beyond two years, your employer can fire you by declaring the employment relationship “frustrated”. And in this event, you should consult with one of our lawyers.
When your employer decides to let you go they must offer you fair notice that your job is ending. You can use this time to look for alternative work while earning a salary.
Alternatively, your employer can offer you severance pay in lieu of this notice period. The Employment Standards Act outlines the minimum standards for notice and severance pay. However, if your employer terminates you without cause, then you could be entitled to more than the minimum. The circumstances of your employment come into play to determine the fairness of your severance package, such as your age, your position, length of service and how long it will take you to find another job. If you are close to retirement and at a senior point in your career, chances are you will find some challenges to land an equivalent job any time soon. And in this case, your severance should be much higher than the minimum. Contact us before you sign any termination contract to ensure you don’t leave money behind.
This sometimes occurs when new owners take over a company with existing employees. They start announcing the “new order” and all of a sudden the terms of your employment change. This includes seniority, job descriptions, location and hours of employment, etc. It may even include wage cuts. If these changes are necessary for the survival of the business then your boss has to provide you with options. He cannot unilaterally change the terms of your employment.
In exchange for the wage cut, they should offer you equivalent “consideration”. Examples are more vacation time, signing bonuses, reduced hours etc
If these changes are not acceptable to you, then your employer must offer you an adequate severance package to end your employment relationship.
This is one of the most contentious employment issues of our times. Lecker & Associates fought a precedent setting case which clarified laws that remained open to interpretation before. If you are a true “Independent Contractor”, then you must remain fully in control over your work assignments. Essentially, you would operate like a business. Many project based contractors operate in this manner. They pay their own taxes and generally use their own resources (tools & equipment, etc.); they can set their own hours and also hire employees to complete portions of the work. Often, fees charged by contractors are higher than wages for hourly employees.
Any other type of arrangement is likely that of a “dependent contractor”. They may be skirting the law. They might be avoiding paying out your CPP, EI and severance benefits. Contact one of our lawyers for an assessment of your case.
Read more about the full range of services we offer. Our experience allows us to handle almost any type of case, no matter how difficult.
Be informed of your rights with our blogs. Written by our Employment Lawyers, we update them regularly, featuring issues that impact employees daily.
Legal fees should never deter any employee from seeking justice. A qualified staff member will conduct a complimentary initial assessment.
We Can Help
Awareness of Your Rights Offers You The Power to Level The Playing Field With Your Employer.