PRIVACY IN ONTARIO'S BUSINESSES

Introduction
In 1995, the European Union directed its member states to conduct business only with countries that had adequate privacy protections in place.  In response to this directive, the Canadian Federal Government set about enacting privacy legislation to govern the private sector in Canada.  Specifically, the federal legislation was intended to regulate the collection, use and disclosure of personal information across the country and thereby promote and enforce a “unified privacy principle” across Canada.
 

LYING ABOUT REASONS FOR TERMINATION CAN COST EMPLOYER

A woman we will call Lucy had been working as a business manager for a car dealership in Alberta for ten months when she was approached by another car dealership offering her employment.  She had not been actively looking for other employment and was at first hesitant to entertain the offer. After two interviews, however, she was persuaded that she would be able to make more money at the new job, resigned her old employment and changed employers.

PAY EQUITY ACT AND HOW IT WORKS

The Pay Equity Act of Ontario applies to the public sector and to private sector employers with more than ten employees.  Almost everybody.
 

IS A SUSPENSION THE SAME AS A TERMINATION?

By July 7th of 2000, Ian was in his twelfth year of driving for a transportation company.  On Saturday, July 8th, Ian attended a fishing derby, caught the biggest fish and decided to drive home after drinking alcohol to celebrate. 
 

CONTRACTS - THERE MUST BE AN EXCHANGE FOR CONTRACTS TO BE ENFORCEABLE

Whether or not a written employment agreement exists, the law views the employment relationship as a contract between an employer and employee.  In any contractual situation, in order for one party to prove that a contract exists, it must prove not only that a promise was made but that the other party got something for making the promise.  Put another way, the party trying to prove the contract must show that they gave something up of value to gain the promise (contract) they say exists.
 

BEING PUNISHED FOR MATERNITY LEAVES NOT LEGAL

QUESTION:  While my employment contract states that I am to be paid salary, last week I was told that I was being switched to hourly pay.  As a result  any time I miss from work will be docked from my pay.  Recently, my employer indicated to me that by having three children in the five and a half years of my employment, I am taking advantage of the company's good will.  Ironically, I only took twelve weeks off work for each child.  I have been told that while it is one thing to burden my life by having my children so close together, I was also creating a burden for the company.  Last week I took a day off work to take my baby to the hospital and immediately after I was changed from salary to hourly.  Can they do this?
 

RELEASE DEADLINE MEANS NOTHING

Today I offer up a nugget of information that might save you considerable anxiety should you ever be terminated and receive a severance offer. 
 

DEFINING HARASSMENT, SEXUAL AND OTHER

There is a commonly held mistaken belief that there is a law against harassing employees.  In fact, there really is no such law.  It is almost astounding how often I hear of situations in which employees are accusing their employer of harassment.  The term harassment is used as if the very utterance of the phrase should make employers quake in their boots.  The phrase is spoken as if harassment is a legal concept recognized by all courts and leading to dire consequences for the perpetrator.  None of this is the case.  The only legal context in which harassment has any meaning is the Ontario Human Rights Code.  It prohibits sexual harassment and harassment generally on the basis of one’s age, colour, creed, etc.  If you are being harassed as a result of one of those factors, there are indeed legal consequences for that behaviour.
 

RIGHT TO PRIVACY TO BECOME LAW

The Ontario Government is considering a draft piece of privacy legislation that will significantly impact the way employers handle confidential information arising out of pension and benefit plans. 
Traditionally, employers have always respected that employees have the right to privacy with respect to what treatments and medications for which they are seeking compensation through the benefits plan and with respect to the details of their pension entitlements.
 

GENEROUS AWARD FOR WRONGFUL DISMISSAL

A man we will call Jimmy worked as the regional manager of a trucking company in British Columbia for almost 18 years.