BlackBerry, the Waterloo-based smartphone making giant, is the target of a class action lawsuit which is levied by more than 300 former employees of the Canadian firm. The lawsuit was first spotted by Mobile Syrup and was filed by law firm Nelligan O’Brien Payne.
What did BlackBerry do to get sued?
According to a news release from law firm Nelligan O’Brien Payne LLP, the smartphone making giant based in Canada is facing a lawsuit from more than 300 former employees across Canada.
The lawsuit by the former employees is quite forward in its accusations. According to the ex-employees of the Canadian smartphone maker, the company arranged to transfer more than 300 employees across Canada to its business partner. The lawsuit claims that the Waterloo-based company informed the employees that they had resigned their employment only after they accepted employment with the business partner.
Now that is not something that Court would just ignore. Basically, the 300+ former employees are alleging that the smartphone making giant said they would keep their jobs under a new business partner; however, the employees quickly lost their jobs once the deal was made.
The suit says, “Blackberry provided resignation letters for the employees to sign and dictated their last date of employment.” It further says that the smartphone maker stated that the transfer (of the employees) is not a sale of business, which means that the employees will lose all of their years of service.
What does BlackBerry have to say about the lawsuit
The lawsuit against BlackBerry adds that the Waterloo-based smartphone maker has breached its duties of honesty and good faith and has intentionally misled the employees. The lawsuit says, “BlackBerry structured this transaction in such a way as to avoid paying these employees their statutory entitlements.” Now, the law firm is asking for those provincial statutory entitlements along with bad faith and punitive damages, and costs.
The law firm says the actions of the smartphone making giant amount to a termination of the employees’ employment. It says, “This entitles these employees to statutory, common law, and/or contractual entitlements on termination.”
The smartphone making company laid off over 200 employees from Florida and Waterloo in 2016, followed by an announcement in 2012 to eliminate over 5,000 jobs over the a multi-year period.
The Canadian firm has released a statement regarding the lawsuit as well. It says, “We have reviewed the allegations in the lawsuit, and are confident we complied with all our obligations to our employees. Therefore, we believe the case lacks merit, and we will defend against it vigorously.”