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Using independent contractor not a “get out of jail free” card

A business’ obligations to its workers will depend on whether the workers are employees or independent contractors. However, a recent decision reminds us that, even where a worker is a true independent contractor, this distinction may not preclude a business being liable to third parties, such as customers, when the worker does something wrong.

 

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Workplace instant messaging: Information overload

We all know that social media, electronic communications and the online world has changed how we interact socially. Who has the patience to leave a voice message for a friend about a restaurant meeting place, let alone listen to one? That’s what instant messaging is for. Short, efficient and no small talk. But, does this efficient communication work in the workplace?

 

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Tort of harassment: Employer ordered to pay employee $100,000

This blog discusses a case where a trial judge awarded an employee $100,000 general damages because the employer committed, among other things, the tort of harassment.

 

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Interviews: 6 reasons why HR should really rethink them

Interviews are by nature fraught with problems and really should only be used in cases where some system has been put in place to mitigate the inherent dangers in interviews or supplement their shortfalls. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, here are a few problems with interviews.

 

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Don’t accept a resignation too quickly

Imagine that you find yourself in a heated argument with one of your employees and, having apparently had enough, the employee announced that he is fed up and is done with the company. He then handed you his pass card and stormed out of the office. Can you proceed on the basis that he has resigned?

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with: an employment agreement not signed before the first day of work; a volunteer in a coma who willingly assumed risks of the task that caused his injury; and the electronic distribution of T4 information slips.

 

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Constructive dismissal? A question of interpretation

The employee in this case acted hastily, and the employer prevailed against his constructive dismissal claim. However, the employer may have avoided the time and expense of litigation if the bonus agreement had contained clear, concise language.

 

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Reasonable settlement offer prevents litigious complainant from proceeding

A recent decision of the BC Human Rights Tribunal serves as a useful reminder of the utility of a reasonable settlement offer, which can result in the Tribunal putting an end to complaint proceedings without a hearing.

 

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Compensation for Employers of Reservists Program update: Part 2

As you may recall, we at Human Resources PolicyPro have been following up on the Compensation for Employers of Reservists Program (CERP) since 2015. On February 3, 2017, the federal government announced the roll–out of the CERP.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with: Ontario’s current and upcoming minimum wage; whether the terms of an employee’s employment contract could be implied because of industry practice; and Ontario Human Rights Commission’s new report, Not on the menu: OHRC inquiry report on sexualized and gender-based dress codes in restaurants.

 

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WCB to employers: You need policies before Canada legalizes marijuana

Canada legalizes marijuana

On March 21, 2017, at a breakout session during a convention on the topic of Canada legalizing marijuana, a spokesperson for the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board says employers should have policies in place before Canada legalizes marijuana, because it could affect safety on the job.

In addition to examining this statement by Saskatchewan WCB, this article also discusses if medical marijuana is a covered medical expense under workers’ compensation.

 

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Workforce analytics pureplay: Are you a fit?

7 questions to ask yourself to see if you/your company is a fit for this approach to HR analytics and reporting. Hint: if you’re mid-market in size (1000–5000 employees) you just may be a fit.

 

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Are employees of a marijuana dispensary protected by employment standards?

With news almost every week of another marijuana dispensary raided by the police, Ontarian’s have asked, can the Ministry of Labour enforce employment standards (i.e. notice of termination, overtime, etc.) in favour of individuals who work at these criminal enterprises? In short, yes. There is simply no exemption in the Employment Standards Act (“ESA”) which exempts […]

 

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Home renos and employment agreements: How employers can avoid the money pit

With home repairs, there is risk in DIY. Similarly, employment agreements require the input of an expert. If you’re not an employment lawyer, don’t try this (i.e. drafting or revising an employment agreement) at home.

 

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Federal Budget 2017-18

On March 22, 2017, Canada’s Finance Minister Bill Morneau tabled the Liberal Government’s Federal Budget 2017, Building a Strong Middle Class, which includes various measures affecting payroll, and an abundant amount of measures that would be of interest to employers, including the extension of maternity leave to 18 months, the electronic distribution of T4 information slips, and the elimination of various tax credits.

 

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