Blog

2018 Year in Review

Sex, Drugs and…Termination Clauses?

While 2017 brought about sweeping changes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000, 2018…brought about sweeping changes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000. While 2017 brought about employer panic and confusion over the legalization of cannabis, 2018… continued to do much the same. For yet another year, we were treated to several judicial assessments of the enforceability of termination clauses, and we continued to see the quantums of human rights and other damages increase. In a sense, everything old is new again.

Legal Influencer

Stuart Rudner recognised as Legal Influencer in Canadian HR Law by Lexology

Stuart has been recognised as the only Legal Influencer in Canadian HR Law in the first Lexology Awards, announced in October 2018.

Relying on a bespoke automated process to analyse Lexology data, the Lexology Awards reward those who produce great legal content for their subscribers. At the end of each quarter, individual authors are recognised as Legal Influencers, and law firms or contributors as Thought Leaders.

Lessons Learned: What We Can Take Away From Aurora

It’s happened again, and it’s no less devastating each and every time. On February 15, 2019, a mass shooting at the Henry Pratt Company in Aurora, Illinois (roughly an hour from Chicago) left six people dead, including the shooter. Among those killed were a human resources manager, an HR intern in his first day on the job, a plant manager, a union chairman, and a stockroom attendant.
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accommodation in the workplace for family commitments

It Takes A Village: Ontario’s Human Rights Tribunal and the Lingering Debate over Accommodating Parental Responsibilities

Life as a working parent is never an easy balance. While parents from all walks of life manage to make it work out of necessity, there are inevitably some missed piano recitals or sporting events because of work commitments, and conversely missed work opportunities to ensure a cheering and supportive presence at the next hockey game. Yet when that hockey game is actually a doctor’s appointment, and no one else is available to take the child to the appointment, the priorities naturally shift from work to home.
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employment law review

2018 Year in Review: Sex, Drugs and…Termination Clauses?

While 2017 brought about sweeping changes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000, 2018...brought about sweeping changes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000. While 2017 brought about employer panic and confusion over the legalization of cannabis, 2018... continued to do much the same. For yet another year, we were treated to several judicial assessments of the enforceability of termination clauses, and we continued to see the quantums of human rights and other damages increase. In a sense, everything old is new again.
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Mitigation

If the employee is entitled to reasonable notice under the common law, then the employee has a duty to mitigate their damages, which means that they have a duty to take reasonable steps to find comparable employment.
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uber employee or contractor

Going Dutch No Longer: The Court of Appeal Weighs in on Uber’s Arbitration Clause

The question of independent contractor versus employee has been a hot topic in the world of employment law for years now, and one that frequently makes news outside of legal circles. In a post for Canadian HR Reporter last year, we looked at the case of a Domino’s Pizza driver who gained publicity when the Ministry of Labour accepted his complaint, and determined that he was actually an employee and not an independent contractor. That driver was issued back pay to partially compensate for the misclassification.
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probationary period at work

Probationary Periods

In the recent case of Van Wyngaarden v Thumper Massager Inc., the Ontario Divisional Court confirmed that unless a dismissal is in bad faith, an employer is entitled to dismiss an employee during the probationary period without cause and without notice.
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Severance Pay and the Issue of Payroll

The most common requirements for an employee to be eligible for severance pay is that the employer must have a payroll of at least $2.5 million, and the employee must have been employed for at least 5 years.
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jury duty

Jury duty and leave of absence

Like it or not, as a Canadian citizen, you are expected to serve jury duty when summoned by your jurisdiction’s courthouse. And as an employer, some of your staff may be absent for that reason.
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Recreational Cannabis Use at Staff Party

The Rudner Law Annual Holiday Party Post: The Cannabis Edition

Although office holiday parties can be an amazing way to thank employees for their hard work all year, they can also be a minefield of potential liability for employers. This liability can crop up in any number of ways, including through harassing or offensive comments, inappropriate sexual or romantic advances, inadvertent discrimination, and excessive alcohol consumption. This year, in addition to these issues, employers also need to be prepared to deal with a brand new potential pitfall: the use of recreational cannabis.
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marijuana at work

Negotiating the complexities of drug and alcohol policy and legalized recreational marijuana

Now that the use of recreational marijuana has been legalized, an employer’s existing drug and alcohol policies are unlikely to carry adequate wording to cover risks of applying unenforceable disciplinary procedures.
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Workplace Investigations and Suspensions

We are dealing with investigations more and more often in the context of employment or HR law, and the reality is, as we often tell our employer clients, you cannot impose discipline, especially dismissal, until you investigate.
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letter writing

An Open Letter Regarding Human Rights and the Ontario PC Party Resolution R4

The Lawyers of Rudner Law have penned the following open letter regarding the Ontario PC Party Resolution R4.
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