By Chelsea Gibson, BA, LLB and Kevin Thompson, B.Sc.
In contracts of an indefinite duration, employment is one of continuous service and intended to last for an indefinite period of time, with no specified or foreseeable end to the relationship. This type of contract is accompanied by a number of rights and obligations, most notably the right to reasonable notice or pay in lieu, upon termination.
In fixed-term contracts, the employment relationship is intended to last for only a specific and definite length of time or until a specific project is completed. Once the term or project is finished, the fixed-term employment relationship ends. Such employees are often referred to as being in a ‘contract’ position. Where there is a validly constituted fixed-term contract, an employer is not required to provide the employee with reasonable notice since the employment relationship naturally comes to an anticipated end at either a specified time or upon the completion of a specified project.
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