Ted's Blog


Insolence, Insubordination And After-Acquired Evidence Of Just Cause

On November 9, 2021, the B.C. Supreme Court released its decision in the case of Golob v. Fort St. John (City), 2021 BCSC 2192.

The case concerned a wrongful dismissal claim against the City of Fort St. John by its former Deputy Fire Chief.

The City dismissed the plaintiff for what it alleged to be just cause. This followed an investigation into a report that the Deputy Fire Chief had been overheard making disparaging remarks about his superior, the Fire Chief.

The Court's decision provides a useful refresher on two important legal principles associated with just cause terminations:

  1. No duty of "procedural fairness" is owed by an employer to an employee, even when the employer is a public body.
  2. Reliance can be placed on after-acquired evidence of just cause that existed at the time of termination.

For the benefit of those who appreciate precision in drafting, the Court also helpfully distinguished between "insubordination" and "insolence" as separate and different forms of misconduct.

On Sarcasm

From the boz.com web site:

I first discovered sarcasm as a freshman in college, which I realize makes me a bit of a late bloomer as far as teenagers go. There were certain classmates who seemed to always come across as clever and funny no matter the topic. Over time I noticed there was a simple formula to their contributions and it was pretty easy to mimic. It could be as simple as responding with the opposite emotion as one might expect, feigning joy at bad news and heartbreak at good. On more complex topics it could be as simple as just repeating something someone else said but in a sarcastic tone.