temporary layoff, constructive dismissal, workplace lawyers

Temporary Layoff Considered Constructive Dismissal at Common Law

Almost a year after the Ontario government enacted Ontario Regulation 228/20 – the Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (“IDEL”) under the Employment Standards Act, 2000, S.O. 2000, c.41, the Ontario Superior Court has found that employees who have been temporarily laid off due to a reason related to COVID-19, are able to bring a civil action for constructive dismissal under common law. As outlined in our previous article on IDEL, while the Ontario Regulation 228/20 (“Regulation”) provided some flexibility for employer’s...

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paid IDEL, workplace lawyers,

Paid Infectious Disease Emergency Leave in Ontario

On April 29, 2021, the Government of Ontario passed Bill 284 , COVID-19 Putting Workers First Act, 2021, which amended the Employment Standards Act, 2000’s provisions related to the Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (IDEL). Specifically, Bill 284 has implemented up to three paid days of job protected leave for provincially regulated non-unionized employees for any situation in which Infectious Disease Emergency Leave would have already been available. Bill 284 comes in the wake of a surge of COVID-19 cases...

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cani get EI if my hours of work are reduced, workplace lawyers

Can I Get EI If My Hours of Work Are Reduced?

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected our lives in several ways – from limited in-store shopping, to cancelled events and gatherings, to outright job loss and business closures. The financial strains caused by the pandemic are being felt by employers and employees alike across the country, causing some employees to turn to employment insurance (EI). Since the beginning of the pandemic, both federal and provincial governments have implemented measures aimed at curtailing some of these financial strains, in hope of keeping...

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just cause dismissal, workplace lawyers, employment lawyers

The High Threshold of a Just Cause Dismissal

It is well-known that an employer may dismiss an employee for just cause, but where it does so, the employer has the burden to demonstrate it had just cause to dismiss the employee. A recent Ontario decision provides another example where the employer was unable to meet the high threshold of a just cause dismissal after it terminated a long-service employee due to his insubordination. Facts In Czerniawski v. Corma Inc., 2021 ONSC 1514, Mr. Czerniawski was a good worker with...

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rescind offer of employment, workplace lawyers

Can an Employer Rescind an Accepted Offer of Employment?

Normally in Ontario, non-unionized employees will be provided a written employment contract to be signed prior to commencing employment with an employer. The employment contract is a binding contract setting out the terms of the employment. It is common for an employee to have their first day of work sometime after the employment contract has been signed. But what happens if an employer rescinds an accepted offer of employment? The Ontario Superior Court of Justice case Kim v. BT...

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working parents, employment lawyer

Can Working Parents Be Dismissed for Staying at Home?

As Ontario scrambles to handle COVID-19 variants amidst the third wave, it has delivered some mixed messages about in-person instruction at school. On April 12, 2021, Ontario confirmed that students will be reverting to online learning indefinitely. Although childcare centres remain open, before and after care for school-aged children is not being offered. This announcement left many parents and caregivers wondering how they will juggle supervising their children at home and their work. A common question we receive is,...

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constructive dismissal, resignation, workplace lawyers in ontario

Can You Claim Constructive Dismissal Without Resigning?

In Ontario, a constructive dismissal is when an employer makes a substantial change to the terms of employment without the employee’s consent. If this happens, the employee may treat this as a termination of the employment relationship. As an employee, can you claim constructive dismissal without resigning? What amounts to a constructive dismissal? A constructive dismissal may occur where an employer makes a substantial and unilateral change to the terms of an employee’s employment. The change must be significant, such as...

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bona fide occupational requirement, workplace lawyers in Ontario

What Is a Bona Fide Occupational Requirement in Ontario?

Although Ontario has robust human rights laws, they are not boundless. In the workplace, a worker may be able to show discrimination where a workplace requirement or factor results in unequal treatment based on certain protected characteristics. However, there are exceptions and defences that an employer can assert in response. For example, an employer is required to accommodate a worker only up to a certain point, called undue hardship. Further, Ontario’s Human Rights Code (the Code) states that the rights of...

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employee handbooks, workplace lawyers, employment lawyers

The Importance of Employee Handbooks in Ontario

In Ontario and federal workplaces, an employee handbook can go hand in hand with an employment contract. The employer may have certain policies that would not fit into the employment contract or make it overly lengthy. This includes policies for, but not limited to, health and safety, workplace hazardous materials, anti-harassment and discrimination, and accessibility. Such policies are a perfect inclusion in a complimentary employee handbook. Considering the importance of employee handbooks, employers should be aware of the benefits...

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maternity and parental leave, workplace lawyers, human rights

Maternity and Parental Leave in Ontario

In Ontario, new parents are able to take time off work to care for a newborn or newly welcomed child. There are typically two types of leaves that employees are able to take prior to, or once their child arrives, they are (1) maternity leave (also referred to as pregnancy leave), and (2) parental leave. This article covers the difference between pregnancy and parental leave, the applicable laws that govern these unpaid leaves of absence, and some common questions. What...

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