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I've worked at a manufacturer for 12 years before getting laid off due to covid with an expectancy to be called back. An opportunity came up for me to make better money than what government assistance provides. Word got back to my previous employer who I'm currently laid off by, and the HR representative emailed me asking if the rumor was true. I was advised to ignore that email unless threatened with termination or job abandonment. It's a little over a week later and HR has emailed me again asking for my phone number this time and saying he needs to talk with me.

I want to avoid talking to him over the phone if I can...

Am I safe to reply as follows?

"It's the same number I wrote next to my email. You'll have to leave a message if you're calling from a number I don't recognize. 95% of those have been CRA scams over the last few months so I just let them go to voicemail and sort it out later.

"I ignored your last email intentionally because the answer to that question really doesn't make a difference one way or the other. I think it's in bad taste for [manufacturer] to be asking that given the circumstances. What I may or may not be doing to stay afloat during exceptional times while laid off from [manufacturer] isn't [manufacturer] business and to be asking something like that implies to me that it will be weighed into the decision on when or if I'll be called back when it legally can't be.

"As far as I'm concerned, given the extremely limited information I've been given by [manufacturer] ; I'm still waiting to be called back to work."

Thank you

Thank you for your question. If you work elsewhere during a layoff, it would not constitute a resignation and you will still maintain your years of service and entitlement to severance if the company elects to terminate you. However, unless you signed a contract of employment that explicitly allows an employer to lay you off, you can treat your employment as having been terminated. Please contact us at 1-855-821-5900 for a more in depth consultation.
The Lawyers at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP
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