Employment & Labour

Cannabis legalization doesn’t mean you can be high at work

By Stuart Rudner On Oct. 17, 2018, the recreational use of cannabis was decriminalized. For several years before that, I spoke at conferences to address extensive fears that decriminalization would lead to rampant drug use and impairment at work. Read more

Conflicting statutory obligations do not absolve employer of duties

By Laura Williams . Employers in Canada are subject to a variety of legislation that governs the way they conduct business in areas ranging from environmental compliance to employee relations. What does an employer do when two of those statutory obligations seem to be at odds? While most employment-related legislation interacts with little difficulty, on occasion fulfilling one statutory obligation may cause the employer to violate another obligation at law. Read more

Costs award reduced from $171,000 to zilch

By Barry Fisher In this case , the judge was called upon to reconsider his trial award of costs after the Court of Appeal reduced the plaintiff’s damages from $137,000 to $57,000. Read more

Civil tort rejection won’t prevent harassment claims

Harassment claims will continue to flow despite the Ontario Court of Appeal’s rejection of it as a freestanding civil tort, says Toronto employment lawyer Kumail Karimjee. Read more

See a lawyer before signing termination agreement: MacLeod

It’s important to get legal advice before accepting a termination package to ensure you are getting the best possible deal, says Toronto employment lawyer Doug MacLeod. Read more

Progressive discipline vital in just-cause terminations

Progressive discipline is critical in terminations alleging just cause, says Toronto employment lawyer Soma Ray-Ellis. Read more

Mutual release set aside due to fraudulent misrepresentation

By Barry B. Fisher . In this case , the Ontario Court of Appeal upheld the lower courts’ decision to set aside a settlement with its ex-employee to whom they had paid 36 months severance pay only to find out later that he had actually ripped them off for a million dollars. Read more

Directors sent to jail for failure to pay employee wages

By Doug MacLeod . If you are a director or a party to a unanimous shareholder agreement did you know that you are personally liable for unpaid wages and you could go to jail for up to one year for failing to pay them? Read more

Costly mistakes for startups

By Christopher Achkar . Startups are infant businesses and most have doomsday clocks – a deadline by which they must become profitable to survive. Success in the startup sphere depends on several elements, and adaptability to the many moving parts while adhering to legal standards greatly increases success rates. Read more

Prevent mental health issues from impacting your bottom line

Although mental health issues can be uncomfortable to discuss, employers have a duty to inquire if they suspect one of their employees is suffering from an undisclosed illness, says Toronto employment lawyer Jordan Rodney. Read more

Can an employer rely on the findings of a criminal trial?

By Laura Williams . When an employee is convicted of a criminal offence, employers can be left wondering what to do. Depending on the nature of the crime, an employer may feel that the worker’s continued employment is not tenable and may wish to end that relationship for that reason. Read more

Harassment at work? Employers, take heed!

By Bram Lecker and Simon Pelsmakher . In recent years, the media has cast a spotlight on the topic of harassment at work. As employment lawyers, we regularly bear witness to this despicable phenomenon through our clients. It portrays human relationships at their worst. Read more

Harassment complaints part 1: Employers’ duties

In the first instalment of a two-part series on harassment complaints, Toronto civil litigator Stephany Mandin discusses an employer’s duty to investigate. Read more

Not every breach of contract is cause for dismissal

By Stuart Rudner and Anique Dublin . A British Columbia court recently ruled that an employer did not have just cause to terminate an employee even though the employee was in breach of her employment contract. Read more

In mediation, final offers are a road to nowhere

The mediation table is already packed with drama — back and forth negotiations, emotion, and trials and tribulations — so the last thing it needs is for one party to table a final offer, says Toronto mediator and employment lawyer Peter Israel. Read more