Canada Hiring & Firing

News & Analysis as of

Employee who forged 16 sick notes, then tried to blame her manager, was fired for cause

A Canada Revenue Agency employee who forged signatures on 16 sick notes was fired for cause, a federal adjudicator has decided. The employee had a problem with absenteeism and started missing work without calling in. The...more

Top 10 Issues for Employers, Issue #5: Dos and Don’ts of Interviews

This is the fifth instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series. Interviewing prospective employees can be a difficult process for the applicant and the employer alike. For the employer, aside from ensuring that the...more

Should there be a distinct test for family status discrimination? Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario says no

The test for demonstrating prima facie family status discrimination has received a great deal of attention over the last few years. It was initially thought that the family status test set out in Johnstone1 (the “Johnstone...more

After being told that she should just “quit” if she felt unsafe, dismissed employee awarded $15,000 in damages

A charity has been ordered to pay a dismissed employee $15,000 in damages after dismissing her shortly after she had raised safety issues, in violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The charity ran retail...more

Agency personnel in the healthcare sector: who is the real employer?

In recent years, the Québec Tribunal administratif du travail (the “TAT”) (formerly the Commission des relations du travail) has frequently been called on to address the legal implications involved in the hiring of temporary...more

The Resignation Trap: Avoiding Unwanted Consequences When an Employee Resigns

It may be assumed that when an employee says “I quit” or walks into his employer’s office, hands in his keys and says “I’m done” the employer can accept the employee’s resignation and move on with replacing the employee....more

Health Alert (Australia) October 10, 2016

In This Issue: - Judgments; Legislation; and Reports. - Excerpts from Judgments: - Commonwealth. High Court 5 October 2016 - Lyons v Queensland [2016] HCA 38 The question in this appeal...more

British Columbia Arbitrator Reinstates Firefighter Convicted of Possession of Stolen Boat

In a recent grievance decision, Re Prince George and Prince George Firefighters, Local 1372 (Williams), 2016 CarswellBC 2591, a labour arbitrator reinstated a firefighter whose employment was terminated after being found...more

Ontario Court Rules that ESA Temporary Layoff may still Result in Constructive Dismissal

An Ontario Court has ruled in Bevilacqua v Gracious Living Corporation, 2016 ONSC 4127 that even in cases where an employer has complied with the temporary layoff provisions of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “Act”),...more

“Competent supervisor” obligation relates to competence in safety, not in performance management: OLRB dismisses OHSA retaliation...

A laid-off worker’s safety-retaliation complaint under the Occupational Health and Safety Act has been dismissed because it was really a complaint about management’s assessment of his performance – not about safety....more

Persistent “sexual annoyance” of five female coworkers gets employee fired for cause, despite late reporting of incidents

A shelter support worker’s persistent pattern of sexual comments to five female coworkers justified his dismissal for cause, despite the coworkers’ failure to promptly report the incidents, a labour arbitrator has decided....more

A Rose by Any Other Name is Not as Sweet: When a Non-Solicit is Actually a Non-Compete

The Ontario Court of Appeal has held that the words “accept business”, in what the employer intended to be a non-solicitation clause, served to restrict competition and is therefore not merely a non-solicitation...more

High school machine shop teacher loses work refusal case

A machine shop teacher’s work refusal was not justified, an appeals tribunal has decided, given that the teacher had the ability to manage the class environment to ensure safety. The teacher refused to teach the class if...more

Records Of Employment – Not Just For Terminations

The end of summer is (unfortunately) just around the corner, which for many employers means saying goodbye to student employees and seasonal workers. Most employers know that they need to complete a record of employment (ROE)...more

Post-dismissal doctor’s report was relevant: disabled employee reinstated for further consideration of possible accommodation,...

An employee whose medical condition had improved both before and after termination has been reinstated for further consideration of possible accommodations, after an arbitrator relied on a doctor’s assessment done after...more

Double Check those Bonus Plans!

The Ontario Court of Appeal’s decision in the case of Paquette v. TeraGo Networks Inc. should have all employers running to double-check and possibly amend their bonus plans.  A further case released on the same day by the...more

Employer loses wrongful dismissal case after court finds safety rules unclear

An employer has lost a wrongful dismissal case after a court found that its safety rules, which it alleged the employee violated, were unclear and not clearly-communicated. The employee worked at a solid waste facility...more

Wilson: SCC Overhauls Standard of Review?

Tax professionals who advise clients on judicial review of the CRA’s discretionary decisions should monitor developments in the standard of review in light of the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Wilson v Atomic Energy...more

How should employers deal with pensions in a severance package?

HR professionals often ask us how to deal with pension issues when they structure severance packages for non-union employees. Should employees continue to earn pension benefits after termination of employment?  If so, for how...more

Bartender, fired for smoking marijuana at work, loses human rights complaint

A B.C. bartender has lost his human rights compliant after he was dismissed for smoking marijuana on shift. The bartender also served as assistant manager of the restaurant. The employer had a policy that prohibited...more

New Court Decisions Reinforce Need for Benefit Communications Policy

In my last post to this blog I extolled the virtues of a benefit communications policy for HR professionals who communicate pensions and benefits to fellow employees. I pointed out that years of benefit miscommunication has...more

Supreme Court of Canada Holds Private Federal Employers Must Have Just Cause to Dismiss Non-Managerial Employees

Part III of the Canada Labour Code (the “Code”) contains unjust dismissal provisions that apply to private Canadian employers subject to federal jurisdiction. Where a complaint of unjust dismissal is filed by a dismissed...more

Sit Back and Relax – Is there a Duty to Mitigate after Termination of a Fixed-Term Contract?

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently issued its decision in Howard v. Benson Group Inc. 2016 ONCA 256, relating to the termination of a fixed-term employment contract. The Plaintiff, Mr. Howard, was a Truck Shop Manager who...more

Federally Regulated Employers Need Just Cause to Terminate Non-Union Employees

In an important decision (Wilson v Atomic Energy of Canada Limited) for federally regulated employers, the Supreme Court of Canada held that the “unjust dismissal” provisions in the Canada Labour Code mean non-union employees...more

Supreme Court of Canada to Federally Regulated Employers: No “Without Cause” Dismissals Under Canada Labour Code

In a decision which returns us to what many thought was the status quo, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that, (save for exempt employees), the unjust dismissal scheme in the Canada Labour Code (the “Code”) does not...more

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