To my mind, what Barresi demonstrates is that the line between employment law principles and “independent contractor” commercial law principles continues to blur. As the nature of what it means to be “employed” continues to evolve, so too must the law.
Can independent contractors claim damages for constructive dismissal? In a decision released March 7, 2018 by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Barresi v Jones Lang LaSalle Real Estate Services, Inc., 2018 ONSC 837, the answer to that question was essentially yes.
The case concerned a commercial real estate broker, Barresi, who was retained as an independent contractor by the defendant Jones Lang LaSalle Real Estate Services, Inc. (“JLL”). There was no debate as between the parties that Barresi was to be an independent contractor to JLL, notwithstanding the facts that Barresi was expressly authorized to hold himself out as a Vice President of JLL and the Local Practice Lead in the Ottawa area.
Barresi was an experienced and accomplished real estate broker, having practised for over 25 years in the area of commercial and residential real estate. For most of his career, Barresi has been associated … Continue reading “Claiming constructive dismissal as an independent contractor”
Be careful of what you say about former employees to their new employers, warns Toronto employment lawyer, Jeff Dutton. As evidenced in Drouillard v. Cogeco Cable Inc., if a former employer suggests to another employer to terminate a certain employee, the former employer could be liable for damages to that employee by way of the tort of inducing breach of contract.