Author Archive - Matt Lalande
Every month I have the benefit of drafting a quick blog on great employment law topics. A case that I very recently read, which is probably the best employment case I have ever read, catalyzed my interest in drafting a quick primer on the law of just cause. In the case of Barton v. Rona Ontario Inc. (2012 ONSC 3809) the plaintiff Kerry Barton was an assistant store manager at Rona in Barrie. He managed approximately 140 employees. One of the employees was wheelchair bound…
Increasingly, Canadian courts have recognized an in-between class of agents that are not technically employees or not technically independent contractors. Over the past few years, our courts have come up with a hybrid category of agents called “dependent contractors.” These are independent individuals who work so closely with employers, and whose relationship status with their “employer” is so sufficiently long-lasting, as to allow them entitlement for reasonable notice.
The employment relationship is a contractual one whether or not a contract of employment was signed. Contracts can be express or implied contracts, i.e., you agree to work and I agree to pay you. Verbal bargains are nearly always upheld as long as those implied contracts are governed by particular employment standards and obligations established by the common law.
We know that there is no precise method to determine the common-law period of reasonable notice when terminating employees. What has evolved and has been the most quoted case to help with this is the infamous Bardal vs. Globe and Mail. This case tells us that reasonable notice must be decided with reference to each specific case, considering the character of employment, length of service of the servant, the age of the servant and the availability of similar employment, having regard to the experience, training and qualifications of the servant.
A wrongful dismissal lawsuit can be a potential nightmare for companies no matter what size. Lawsuits carry with them complex claims that are often convoluted and difficult to understand for the non-legal specialist. This blog post will offer a brief overview of the parameters of some of the damages which can be claimed within the context of a wrongful dismissal lawsuit.
Employers should never accept resignations from employees that are upset. It simply casts a “wider net of possible financial exposure” if things turn nasty. In other words, judges or juries probably won’t sympathize with the issue of resignation acceptance if the employee is genuinely and legitimately upset (not because someone misplaced their red stapler).
Last month I was consulted by a woman with respect to a new employment agreement that she wanted reviewed. The employment opportunity presented to her was by a company that had purchased the software company she was currently employed with for the past 19 years. Her salary remained the same, as did the total of her bonus, although the bonus structure was altered to reflect seemingly unattainable goals. While the new bonus structure did in fact reflect the purchasing company’s exact bonus structure with all of its existing employees, this arrangement was originally her main concern.