Labour & Employment Blog

Verbal References: The Truth Shall Set You Free

Written by on January 30, 2019.

Some employers are wary about providing references for former employees, fearing a defamation lawsuit. However, a recent decision of the Divisional Court suggests that negative references that are substantially true and provided without malice may not be defamatory. In the trial decision of Papp v Stokes et al, 2017 ONSC 2357, the plaintiff brought a claim for wrongful dismissal and defamation against his former employer. The plaintiff’s employment was terminated on December 19, 2013 and th...

Employers: Post and Distribute the Updated ESA Poster

Written by on January 18, 2019.

Under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”), employers must post a copy of the most recent employment standards poster (“ESA Poster”) prepared by the Ministry of Labour in a “conspicuous place” in the workplace. The Ministry of Labour has just released a new version of the ESA Poster, which you can view/print at this link.[1] In addition to posting the updated ESA Poster in a conspicuous place, employers must print it, in colour or black and white, on paper that is at least 8...

Uber Decision Calls into Question Arbitration Clauses in Commercial Agreements

Written by on January 07, 2019.

The news media has widely reported the Ontario Court of Appeal’s January 3, 2019 decision allowing a class-action by Uber drivers to proceed. The decision does not answer the question of whether Uber (and UberEATS) drivers should be considered employees or independent contractors (a conclusion that could have wide-ranging implications for employers that rely on independent contractor agreements). However, one aspect of the decision may have an immediate impact on employers in Ontario – the C...

Employers: Consider these Sample New Year’s Resolutions

Written by on January 04, 2019.

  With the start of a new year comes the opportunity to reflect on your business’s labour relations and start tackling those items on your “to-do” list. Here are three sample New Year’s resolutions that may benefit your business: 1. Revise your template employment contract, if necessary One of the most important clauses in every employment contract is the termination clause. A well-drafted and enforceable termination clause can be the difference between providing terminated emp...

Enforceability of Termination Clauses in Employment Contracts – Trending towards Clarity, or More Uncertainty?

Written by on December 19, 2018.

It is a basic principle of employment law in Ontario that employees terminated without cause are presumed to be entitled to common law reasonable notice of termination unless the parties clearly agreed to a different notice period, typically through a termination clause in an employment agreement, that does not violate the statutory minimums prescribed by the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “ESA”). One issue that frequently arises is whether the parties clearly agreed to a notice period ...