Sunday, 20 July 2014

Ontario Court Says When it Comes to Severance Packages 'A Deal is a Deal'

Can an employer refuse to pay out a severance package after it offers it to an employee and the employee agrees to accept it? That was essentially the question that the Ontario Superior Court of Justice was asked to resolve in the case of Dennis v. Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, 2014 ONSC 3882 (CanLII).

According to the Honourable Justice Brian P. O’Marra, a deal is a deal.

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Summary Judgment - Appropriate In Most But Not All Employment Law Cases

Summary judgment remains an effective and appropriate means for the resolution of wrongful dismissal cases. However, as the recently decided case of Beatty v. Best Theratronics Ltd., 2014 ONSC 3376 (CanLII) demonstrates, not all aspects of such cases are amenable to summary disposition.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Answering the Question "Can my employer..."

“Can my employer…” those three little words are the most common start to any question asked of an employment lawyer by a worker. “Can we” is the most common start to questions asked of an employment lawyer by management. The purpose of this post is to address the issue of what employers can do and what am employee’s rights and response can be.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Ontario Small Claims Court Gains New Powers to Dismiss Claims

As of July 1, 2014, the Ontario Small Claims Court has the power to summarily dismiss any claim made to it, “if the action appears on its face to be inflammatory, a waste of time, a nuisance or an abuse of the court’s process.” This change will be welcomed by those who practice in the Small Claims Court and are sometimes forced to respond to such claims.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Should the Minimum Wage be Increased? Not Necessarily...

Should the minimum wage be increased? Over the past few months a lot has been made of whether the minimum wage for those in the service industries should be.

The following is the opinion of one interested observer and in no way necessarily reflects the views of the law firm with which I am associated. For the reasons that follow, I would like to suggest an alternative to a statutorily increased minimum wage.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Human Rights Tribunal Not The Place To Ask For Severance

Does the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (“HRTO”) have the legal ability (“jurisdiction”) to award severance pay? According to a recent decision from the Divisional Court (a branch of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, and a type of court of appeal), Campbell v. Revera Retirement LP, 2014 ONSC 3233 (CanLII), the answer is that it is probably best to look elsewhere.

The case is an important reminder to potential plaintiffs to pick the proper venue for advancing one’s case.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Employee's Invasion of Customer's Privacy can be Employer's Responsibility

Can an employer be held legally responsible if one of its employees deliberately invades upon the privacy of the employer’s customers? That question was one of the key issues in the recently decided class action certification motion in Evans v. The Bank of Nova Scotia, 2014 ONSC 2135 (CanLII).

The case involves a class action proceeding against the Bank of Nova Scotia and one of its former employees for breaching the privacy of the Bank’s customers.

The case was filed in Ottawa and the certification motion was decided by the Honourable Mr. Justice Robert Smith of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, sitting at Ottawa.

Sean Bawden, editor and primary author of this blog, formerly worked with plaintiff’s counsel and assisted in the formative stages of the case before transferring to Kelly Santini.

While the court did not expressly say that the answer to the question raised at the start of this post was “yes,” it did expressly refuse to say that the answer to the question is “no.”