by Mike Caswell
Raymond James Ltd. is facing a wrongful dismissal lawsuit in the Supreme Court of British Columbia from Leslie Olesen, a Seattle lawyer who worked remotely for the firm's Vancouver office. Ms. Olesen claims that Raymond James constructively dismissed her when it refused to pay a previously agreed salary increase of $45,000. She also says the firm was going to force her to work in Vancouver at her own expense.
The allegations are contained in a notice of claim that Ms. Olesen filed at the Vancouver courthouse on Friday, Feb. 15. According to the suit, Ms. Olesen began working at Raymond James in June, 2008, after meeting the firm's chief compliance officer at a party in Seattle. She previously had a secure job in the compliance department of Russell Company.
Terms of her contract at Raymond James included an annual salary of $115,000 plus four weeks of paid vacation. Raymond James initially required that she work in its Vancouver office, but about one year into the contract the firm agreed that she could work from home in Seattle, the suit states. Ms. Olesen would still attend at the Vancouver office about one day every month.