It's Party Time: Planning a Safe and Liability Free Office Holiday Party

Time Published on November 29, 2011

As we roll into December, many employers will be hosting an office holiday party for their employees. While these events are a great way to thank employees for their hard work in the past year, they can also open up employers to serious liability.

Tag employment law

Supreme Court of Canada Rules in Favour of Postal Workers in Pay Equity Human Rights Decision

Time Published on November 21, 2011

The claim was filed 28 years ago by female employees of Canada Post with the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (the “Tribunal”), alleging discrimination due to discrepancies in pay between workers in clerical positions, which were female dominated, compared with those in the male dominated postal operations group. 

In a 2005 decision, Tribunal awarded the workers $150 million in damages plus interest. The Tribunal’s decision was overturned by the Federal Court in 2008 and this was upheld by the Federal Court of Appeal. The Supreme Court overturned the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision on Thursday.

Tag employment law

Changes to Privacy Legislation: Impact on Employers' Handling of Employee Information

Time Published on November 15, 2011

The federal government has re-introduced legislation to amend the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).  Bill C-12, Safeguarding Canadians’ Personal Information Act, which was introduced on September 29, 2011, had been previously introduced in Parliament in 2010, but failed to be passed into law because of the intervening federal election.

Tag employment law,  privacy

Employer Hit Hard for Discontinuing Disability Benefits Shortly After Termination

Time Published on October 20, 2011

Employers who only provide the minimum amounts required by employment standards legislation after termination are gambling. Sometimes this approach can result in cost savings, but it can also end in a costly damages and legal costs award as occurred in the case of Brito v. Canac Kitchens. Read our Latest Update for more information about the case, and what to do to protect your organization from such awards.

Tag employment law,  wrongful dismissal litigation

Jurisdiction Over First Nations' Employment and Labour Issues: Is it Federal or Provincial?

Time Published on September 13, 2011

Jurisdiction over employment in First Nations and aboriginal employers can be a complicated issue.  Until recently, different courts seemed to take different approaches.  If a federal court was deciding the issue, a broad approach was typically taken. 

Tag employment law

Pay in Lieu of Notice by Salary Continuance Deemed Implicit Right

Time Published on August 29, 2011

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice recently ruled in Bowes v. Goss Power Products Ltd., that a fairly standard termination provision in an employment contract implied the right to provide pay in lieu of notice by salary continuance.  The employer wanted to rely on this right so as to set off any mitigation by the employee during the notional notice period.

Tag employment law,  employment standards,  wrongful dismissal litigation

You Have and ESA Inspector at the Door!

Time Published on July 29, 2011

Don’t miss our comprehensive, half-day training seminar at the Sheraton Toronto Airport on Thursday, September 22.  

Tag employment law,  employment standards

Multiple Notice Extensions Invalidated Notice of Termination

Time Published on July 19, 2011

Over a period of five months, Crown Metal Packaging Canada LP provided Mr. Di Tomaso with five notices of termination, containing four extended termination dates.  Each notice was provided only days before the termination of the notice period in each respective notice.

Tag employment law,  employment standards

Ontario Court of Appeal Rules Non-Competition Clause Unenforceable

Time Published on May 12, 2011

Employers will be disappointed to hear the results of a recent decision in which the Ontario Court of Appeal declared the restrictive covenant in an employment contract, unenforceable. Read about this decision and tips to ensure your contracts are enforceable in our Latest Update.

Tag employment law

Court Rules no Class Action for Constructive Dismissal

Time Published on April 29, 2011

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice has refused to permit a group of former Allstate Insurance employees to sue Allstate for constructive dismissal in a class action.  The group of former sales employees alleged that they were constructively dismissed when the company rolled out a new, company-wide model for product distribution and agent compensation.  Because the policy affected the entire group, the plaintiffs argued it was appropriate to deal with their case by way of a class action.

Tag employment law

Quebec Introduces Incentives With New Work-life Balance Certification

Time Published on April 15, 2011

The government of Quebec has recently introduced new incentives for businesses to promote work-life balance, through its “work-family balance certification” initiative.  Public sector and private sector employers as well as other groups in Quebec may apply for Quebec’s work-family balance certification, which consists of a rating from one to four depending upon the amount of points awarded to the employer. Employers will receive points for, among other things, providing flexible work schedules, day-care arrangements and a compressed work week.

Tag employment law

Court finds employee did not condone changes after 15 months

Time Published on April 12, 2011

The Ontario Superior Court has ruled that an employee who continued to work for 15 months following a change in his terms and conditions of employment had not condoned the change and could claim damages for constructive dismissal.  Read more about this surprising decision and key lessons for employers to learn in our Latest Update.

Tag constructive dismissal,  employment law,  wrongful dismissal litigation

The Enemy Within: Protecting Your Business and Confidential Information from Departing Employees

Time Published on April 11, 2011

Don’t miss our May 16 Webinar:

Tag employment law

New U.S. Labour Department Initiatives to Increase Compliance with Employment Standards

Time Published on June 15, 2010

The U.S. Labour Department has recently commenced an initiative to require employers to prepare and adopt compliance plans to ensure they do not violate wage, job safety and equal employment laws.  The announcement was accompanied by an expression of the desire by Labour Secretary Seth Harris that his department foster a “culture of compliance” among employers, as opposed to a complaint-driven system in which the employers are “caught” not complying.  The intent is for employers to prepare written plans designed to prevent violations of workplace laws, including plans to address safety hazards in the workplace. 

Tag employment law,  employment standards

Court Certifies Overtime Class Action

Time Published on March 10, 2010

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice has ruled that representative plaintiff Cindy Fulakwa can proceed with her class action against Scotiabank on behalf of a class of more than 5,000 sales staff who worked in retail branches of Scotiabank from 2000 to the present. 

Tag class actions,  employment law,  employment standards