Are you prepared for a search warrant?

August 14, 2016 - by: Deanah Shelly 0 COMMENTS

by Deanah Shelly

You’ve watched True Detective and Law & Order. You’ve seen search warrants in action. The police need them to gather evidence involving murder, illegal drugs, and firearms. But beware! Search warrants can also be served on your workplace. read more…

Categories: Employer's Tip


Nonunionized federal employees in Canada insulated from without-cause dismissals

August 07, 2016 - by: Christopher Pigott 0 COMMENTS

by Christopher Pigott

A sharply divided Supreme Court of Canada recently overruled the Federal Court of Appeal and held that, subject to narrow exceptions, federal employers are not entitled to terminate nonunionized employees without cause (Wilson v. AECL). This prohibition applies even if the employer is willing to provide generous notice and severance pay. read more…

Can employer use subjective criteria to evaluate workers during probationary period?

July 24, 2016 - by: Paul Cote-Lepine 0 COMMENTS

by Paul Côté-Lépine

There is sometimes uncertainty surrounding the proper scope of evaluation for a probationary employee. Is an employer limited to relying on neutral, objective criteria, or can the employer also consider subjective criteria? According to a Quebec arbitrator in Syndicat des cols bleus regroupés de Montréal (SCFP, section locale 301) c. Montréal (Ville de), an employer is entitled to take into account subjective criteria. read more…

Early termination of fixed-term contract proves costly

July 17, 2016 - by: Jacqueline Gant 0 COMMENTS

by Jacqueline Gant

The highest court in Ontario recently ordered an employer to pay out a whopping three years of compensation to a 23-month employee terminated without cause. The employee was entitled to his full salary and benefits for the remainder of the five-year fixed-term employment contract. The contract did not clearly say otherwise. In Howard v. Benson Group Inc., this meant the employer had to pay over $200,000 in damages. read more…

Reconsidering random drug and alcohol testing in Canada

July 10, 2016 - by: Hannah Roskey 0 COMMENTS

by Hannah Roskey

Random workplace drug and alcohol testing is generally prohibited by Canadian employers in Canada. However, there are limited circumstances in which it may be permitted. A recent decision of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench, Suncor Energy Inc. v. Unifor Local 707A, provides some further guidance for employers operating in Canada. And provides them with a glimmer of hope. read more…

Arbitration awards: a permanent part of an employee file

by Emilie Paquin-Holmested

In Canada, amnesty clauses are commonly found in collective agreements. The purpose of such clauses is to erase disciplinary measures from an employee’s file after a given period, usually between six and 24 months. Therefore, normally employers cannot consider disciplinary measures that predate the amnesty period when determining the appropriate disciplinary measure to be imposed. read more…

Benefits beyond age 65?

June 26, 2016 - by: Marc Rodrigue 0 COMMENTS

By Marc Rodrigue

The laws that generally provided for mandatory retirement in Canada have been eliminated. Across Canada, with very few exceptions, employees generally cannot be forced to retire at age 65. But can their benefits be cut off at age 65?

Even if employers are permitted to cut off benefits to workers 65 and older under human rights antidiscrimination laws, are they contractually entitled to do so? Recent labor arbitration decisions indicate that if employers don’t properly contract to cut off benefits, they may not be entitled to cut off benefits at all.

read more…

Ontario court finds government’s ‘intransigent’ bargaining strategy unconstitutional

June 19, 2016 - by: Christopher Pigott 0 COMMENTS

by Chris Pigott

In 2015, we reported on the Supreme Court of Canada’s “New Labour Trilogy”—three landmark constitutional law decisions from January 2015 that called into question basic aspects of Canadian labor law. Those decisions sparked a massive debate in the labor law community as to whether Canadian workers had a brand new set of greatly expanded workplace rights.

Just over one year later, some lower courts appear to be taking the view that the New Labour Trilogy did not reshape Canadian workers’ rights to organize, bargain collectively, and take strike action. read more…

Overcoming the hurdles in managing workers’ compensation claims

June 12, 2016 - by: David Marchione 0 COMMENTS

by David Marchione, OHS Consultant/Paralegal

Many employers struggle to efficiently manage workers’ compensation claims. Most provincial experience rating programs established by workers’ compensation boards are based on two things: claim costs and claim duration. Thus, a failure by an employer to efficiently manage a claim can result in increased costs and increased duration of the claim, thus leading to a negative impact on the employer’s experience rating. The situation is further complicated by the fact that managing a worker’s return to work often becomes more difficult as time passes. read more…

Damages for wrongful dismissal: Who must prove what?

June 05, 2016 - by: Keri Bennett 0 COMMENTS

by Keri Bennett

As noted in past articles here, Canadian employees can sue for lack of adequate notice of termination. Fired employees seeking damages for inadequate notice have a corresponding duty to mitigate or minimize any resulting losses. If other work is available, their losses may be minimal. Employees frequently claim a lack of available work. But who must prove what?

In a recent decision, the British Columbia Court of Appeal ruled that where lack of work is claimed, the employee must prove it. It is not up to the employer to prove the opposite. read more…

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