employment standards act
Three of the most popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with significant changes to employment and labour law in Ontario, wrongfully dismissing an employee for refusing to sign an updated list of duties, and an employee’s duty to mitigate.
A recent judgment of the New Brunswick Court of Appeal has once again affirmed the importance of carefully drafting termination clauses in employment contracts. In this case, the Court upheld a trial judgment that a termination clause which purported to limit the employee’s notice entitlement to 20 days was not enforceable. The Court [...]
The law of employment, like every area, is always evolving. This often works to the consternation of both employers and employees, who would like to have a sense of certainty regarding their rights and obligations. While it may sound self-serving, the ongoing evolution of the law is another reason why it is important to work with an employment lawyer on a regular basis, rather than consult once and assume that the law is the same a decade later. The cases below also serve as reminders of the unpredictability of the law.
Employers will often seek to respond to downturns in their business by temporarily reducing head count, with the hope of having those employees return to work when the business improves. This is often referred to as a temporary lay off. Many employers inquire as to their right to temporarily lay off employees, generally in response to financial constraints of the business.
The Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL) conducts inspections to ensure compliance with the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA). The MOL targets employers in (as they put it) “sectors where there is a history of employment standards violations and where vulnerable workers are employed.” Thankfully, at least the MOL announces the targeted sector so that employers can prepare. This time, the target is the retail industry.
A recent decision of the Ontario Superior Court considered the termination of an employee of Open Text Corporation who had been working for Open Text and its predecessor corporations for 17 years. There was no agreement governing his employment with the first company and it received little updating through two more acquisitions. When he was terminated, he complained that the original contract was void due to the transitions and sued for common law notice…
New Liberal Government plans to keep best and brightest and support persons with disabilities in Nova Scotia
The newly elected Liberal government platform states that businesses need workers, and recent graduates and skilled workers need experience. The Liberal government states that it will support young graduates to develop the necessary skills and gain experience in their fields and develop an Accessibility for Nova Scotians with Disabilities Act.
Just like pre-nuptial agreements, employers should contemplate termination when their employment contracts are drafted. A recent case illustrates why it is important to include a legally enforceable termination clause in an employment contract for all employees.
The Ontario Ministry of Labour has announced a blitz of the retail industry for compliance with the Employment Standards Act, 2000. The blitz will run from October through to December 2013.
I am fortunate in my practice to work with clients in different industries, ranging from healthcare and social services to traditional manufacturing. Although employment laws generally apply to all industries in much the same way, there are usually certain issues that some industries face more than others. This is true of many clients I assist in the retail industry.
HRinfodesk poll result and commentary: Unpaid internships – labour standards, human rights questions
The issue of unpaid work has been a hot topic for quite a while now, and despite efforts by authorities to clarify the legal status, sometimes it seems that employers aren’t understanding it any better. To get a better idea of where our readers stand, we recently asked, Do you have unpaid internships at your organization? Slightly more than 80 percent of respondents said no, they don’t use unpaid interns, while nearly 20 percent said yes, they do. We didn’t ask whether employers are using legal unpaid internships, or whether they know if their internship arrangements are legal, but we’d like to offer our two cents and hopefully help our readers understand what’s legal and what’s not when it comes to unpaid internships.
In Trites v. Renin Corp, the court considered “the novel and perplexing legal issue” of whether an employer that is experiencing significant financial difficulties can unilaterally impose a temporary layoff on an employee in the absence of an express or implied term in the contract of employment to support the employer’s action.
For the May long weekend, I posted the top 5 public holiday questions that clients have asked me over the years. Well, another long weekend is upon us and, yes, there are more questions that I am tasked with answering. Below are 5 additional public holiday questions and answers under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”).
It is a fact of life for some entering the labour market—the unpaid internship. For young workers, it is an opportunity to gain experience in a desired field. For employers, it is an opportunity to have recent graduates perform necessary work or apprenticeship at less cost all while assessing suitability for continued employment. Perhaps the modern internship is best explained by the following…
What happens when an employee subject to one-year contracts requests pregancy leave? The employee in this case had been working for the Community Justice Society in Nova Scotia on a one-year contract basis for two years. She asked for a meeting with the executive director because her contract was ending in a month’s [...]