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Court comments on when employers can ask for an independent medical examination

Ontario’s Divisional Court recently confirmed that employers have a right to ask employees to undergo an Independent Medical Examination (IME) in certain circumstances, to facilitate the accommodation process.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with: Employers seeking to change an employee’s terms and conditions of employment; OHRC guidelines on medical information and disability-related accommodation; CRA Income Tax Folio S4-F2-C2, Business Use of Home Expenses.

 

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Accommodating disabled employees: Can an employee demand to work at a different workplace?

In a recent case, an adjudicator concluded that an employer failed to accommodate an employee on long-term disability who requested that she be permitted to work in a different work location than a co-worker for mental health reasons.

 

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It’s in our DNA: Bill S-201 and genetic discrimination

When dealing with requests for accommodation, employee absenteeism and other medical circumstances, employers are routinely faced with the challenge of balancing employee privacy interests against the operational interests of the business when determining how much medical information and what kind of medical information employers can request. The analysis typically centres on the issue of what is reasonable in the circumstances, with diagnostic information being considered to be a clear delineation point as to what employers may request and not request. At the Canadian Senate in January, the question of the protection personal health information took on a new angle, centering around an individual’s right to privacy in respect of their personal genetic information.

 

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To IME or not to IME, this is the question

In the recent decision, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal (“OHRT”) addressed the issue of when it would be reasonable for an employer to request an Independent Medical Exam (“IME”) from an employee during the accommodation process. The OHRT ruled that an employer request for an IME will be justified when it was “reasonable” in the circumstances of creating an individualized accommodation plan.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with changes to employment agreements; consequences of employee comments; and, opinions from non-doctor health and medical professionals.

 

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How to have success with WSIB SIEF cost relief

Most employers know that WSIB-related costs can be very expensive. However, not everyone knows about cost relief programs offered by the Board. We asked Anna Aceto-Guerin for some insights into successfully acquiring SIEF cost relief.

 

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Doctor’s note not always a ticket to a successful human rights claim

When I was in high school and university, it was not uncommon for a few of my classmates to fall ill during exams or just prior to a major test. When explaining to the teacher the next day why they were not present to write the test, one of the more common responses from the teacher would be, “Bring a doctor’s note.”

 

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Learn the latest! — Human Rights Tribunal finds discrimination in request for medical information

In Thompson v. 1552754 Ontario Inc., the applicant was employed as a counter person at the respondent’s coffee shop. The applicant alleged discrimination based on disability when her employer refused to allow her to return to work after a three day absence. The employer would not allow the applicant to return to work without providing it with specific medical clearance that she had returned to her “prior state” of health.

 

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Employer failed in duty to accommodate by not considering employment beyond pre-injury position

In the recent decision Fair and Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal provides a useful guide for employers to follow in determining how to return an employee to the workplace after an extended absence.

 

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Most-viewed articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three most popular HRinfodesk articles this week deal with managing short-term absences, what’s new for payroll 2013, and alleged termination for expressing religious and political views.

 

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OHRC releases consultation report on human rights, mental health and addictions

On Thursday, September 13, 2012, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) released Minds That Matter: Report on the consultation on human rights, mental health and addictions, which is the result of what they heard from the consultation across the province and sets out a number of key recommendations and commitments to address human rights issues that affect people with mental health disabilities or addictions.

 

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What do you do when your employees won’t come to work?

In recent years, employers seem to be struggling with “missing employees” that provide vague doctors’ notes and then disappear, assuming their job is safe. What can employers do? Do you have the right to ask for medical information? Can they dismiss the employee if they don’t provide proper justification for their absence?

 

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