CHECKLIST – THE TERMINATION MEETING
In most cases, the termination should be communicated in a meeting with the employee at which they are advised of the termination and the reasons for it, and are provided with a termination letter.
Where the termination is for disciplinary reasons or for cause, ensure that the investigation is complete and that you have given the employee an opportunity to respond to the concerns or allegations before finalizing your decision.
BEFORE THE MEETING:
Make sure you have a private room set aside.
Make sure there is Kleenex in the room.
Ensure that all documentation is complete before the meeting.
The meeting should be held late in the day or first thing in the morning, if possible, early in the employee’s work week.
Be clear on what you will say and practice – keep it short and to the point.
AT THE MEETING:
If possible, try to have a second person (managerial) in the meeting to witness the termination.
Tell the employee clearly that her or his employment has been terminated and the date when the termination is effective.
Be clear and brief on the reason for the termination (e.g. poor performance, job elimination, disciplinary reasons, absenteeism, etc.).
Do not provide a long-winded explanation; clearly communicate that the decision has been made and that it is final. Do not get involved in a debate about the decision.
Hand the employee the signed letter of termination. This should spell out:
that any unpaid wages, vacation pay, etc. will be paid out.
Bring the meeting to a close in the appropriate manner depending on circumstances (e.g. thank the employee for service rendered and wish her or him luck; invite employee back to work area to pack-up belongings; request return of any property and/or ID, etc.).
If the staff member will be leaving immediately, ensure there are boxes available for packing personal items.
Under some circumstances it may be preferable to ask the employee to leave immediately and return after hours (later in the day/later that week) to clear out her or his desk without disrupting the company/business. This after-hours move should always be supervised.
Communicate termination to relevant co-workers. Craft communication to suit the circumstances and be professional.
There are certain administrative steps to take as part of the termination of an employee. As much as possible, these steps should be undertaken or prepared prior to the termination. This may not be an exhaustive list, depending on your specific circumstances at the time:
Office keys/pass collected Yes No N/A
Cell/Smart phone received Yes No N/A
Employment manual/handbook Yes No N/A
Benefits (if applicable):
This is a summary only, intended to be for your general information only.
We strongly recommend that you contact us, or other qualified employment law counsel, for specific advice that may apply to, or be helpful for, any:
before you initiate or take any steps, including to avoid a potentially costly misstep.
© WARDS LAWYERSPC