07/18/2017 00:00 EDT | Updated 07/18/2017 06:41 EDT

Sears Canada to ask Ontario court if it can begin liquidation sales this week

TORONTO — Lawyers for Sears Canada will be back in court today to ask a Toronto judge if the national retailer can begin liquidation sales as early as Friday.

The department store owner has been under creditor protection since June 22 after announcing it was shuttering 59 stores and cutting approximately 2,900 jobs.

In documents filed with the Ontario Superior Court, the chief financial officer for Sears Canada says it's "crucial'' that the company be able to begin liquidation sales on its inventory no later than this Friday, with the sales completed by Oct. 12.

Last week, Ontario Superior Judge Glenn Hainey gave the company the green light to begin the process of putting itself up for sale.

He also gave the retailer approval to pay $9.2 million in retention bonuses to executives and other key employees.

The payout was part of a compromise with retired employees that will see the company continue making some benefit and pension payments to retirees until Sept. 30.

Founded in 1952, Sears Canada says it hopes to exit court protection as soon as possible this year.