These are the most important things you need to know before you begin your first 2012 payrolls and while preparing to issue T4s, T4As and RL-1s for 2011. We break this down between new reporting requirements for the 2011 tax year and new source deduction requirements for payments made after January 1, 2012.
Under the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulations of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), effective January 1, 2012, organizations in Ontario must provide and make available in an accessible format or with appropriate communication supports, information about emergency response plans or public safety to customers and employees with disabilities.
Probably the most prevalent misconception in the area of employment law is the notion that all employees are entitled to “one month per year” as notice of termination without cause. This has, in the past, been referred to as the golden rule. In spite of repeated judicial pronouncements that the rule no longer applies, human resources professionals continue to apply it.
Generally speaking, a restrictive covenant acts to restrict the activities of a former employee after their employment has ended. They usually come in one of two forms: non-competition clauses and non-solicitation clauses. The law on restrictive covenants is that they are prima facie unenforceable as they are in restraint of trade and therefore against public policy. In order to be enforced, they must be proven by the party that seeks to enforce them to be a reasonable limit on trade.
Do your managers and front line workers have accurate facts about human rights issues? A number of conversations I have had with workers lately inform me that many people allow their emotions to overwhelm the facts. The misunderstandings that flow from this emotional response can lead to costly violations of the law for your organization.
The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration recently issued a fourth set of Ministerial Instructions (MI-4), which came into force on November 5, 2011. According to MI-4, the Federal Skilled Worker program will now have a new eligibility stream for international students pursuing doctoral (PhD) studies at Canadian institutions. This adds an additional 1,000 numbers to the current cap of 10,000, which are available to FSW applicants who do not have arranged employment.
On November 5, 2011, a temporary pause (i.e., a moratorium) was imposed on the sponsorship of parents and grandparents under the Family Class. However, to temper the effect of this decision, the Government of Canada has announced that it will increase the number of sponsored parents and grandparents that Canada will admit next year, from nearly 15,500 in 2010, to 25,000 in 2012, in order to clear out the existing backlog. It will also introduce a Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, which will allow parents and grandparents to remain in Canada for up to 24 months at a time. Parent and Grandparent Super Visa applicants will be required to obtain private Canadian healthcare insurance for their stay in Canada but the visas will be valid for up to 10 years.
December 3 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. On this December 3, the global celebration has an appropriate theme, “Together for a better world for all: Including persons with disabilities in development”. Some people are unaware of a global mandate to achieve accessibility, and may feel isolated when their specific jurisdiction introduces new laws benefitting people with disabilities. Understanding we are all moving in the same direction, albeit using varying methods and timelines, is important when making decisions in your organization.
In Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador Remembrance Day is a paid public (statutory) holiday under the Employment Standards Act. Employees get a day off with regular pay and/or holiday pay; if the employee is required to work on the holiday, the employee must be paid regular wages and get a substituted day off with pay at a later date (depending on the province or territory of employment). Federally regulated employees also have a holiday on Remembrance Day.
Once you have a reputation as a “measurement guy” you get a lot of speaking requests. Recently I was asked to speak on a wellness topic. In the end I declined because even though the measurement aspects of the question were clear, I did not have the knowledge of the topic to deliver well. The request got me thinking about the costs of measurement. Often this is an area that is not considered when people get into the question of finding data.
I can’t believe the year 2011 is coming to an end and the holiday season is so near. Have you thought about how your organization will treat the public holidays around the end of the year? This year, Christmas, December 25, 2011, and New Year’s Day, January 1, 2012, fall on Sundays. The public holiday of Boxing Day, December 26, 2011, applies in Ontario and federally regulated workplaces only, and falls on a Monday.