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Category Archives: Dismissals

Latest Chapter in Employment Law: Contractors and Unintentional Termination

In this edition of The Latest Chapter, we discuss the ongoing issue of misclassification of workers, and whether some people working as “contractors” are really employees in the eyes of the law. We also review a recent decision where an employer effectively terminated an employment relationship without intending to. Sondhi v. Deloitte: Are document reviewers employees or independent contractors? While […]


You Can Fire Someone Without Saying So, But Even “I Quit” May Not Be a Resignation

The Unintentional Dismissal: Be Careful What You Say to Your Staff We all know that most Judges will try to protect employees when they can, as the perception is that employers have greater resources. In recent times, my firm has written about the dangers of accepting resignations too quickly and the need to allow an employee who purports to quit […]


Bonus Clauses: Be Sure they Say What You Think They Say

Bonus: You will be entitled to a discretionary annual bonus of up to 40% of your base salary, to be calculated using the formula set out at Appendix A and updated from year to year, which will take into account both company and individual performance. Payment of any bonus is purely discretionary and there is no guarantee of a bonus […]


I Just Got Fired – Why Am I Getting a Retiring Allowance?

As discussed in previous posts and in my recent Canadian HR Law article, it is sometimes possible to allocate portions of a severance payment in a more tax-effective manner than simply paying a regular salary with all associated withholdings and deductions. Where amounts are paid as a lump sum, they are often paid as a “retiring allowance” in accordance with […]


Latest Chapter in Employment Law: Drug Testing and Whistleblower Protection

In this edition of The Latest Chapter we discuss the Ontario Superior Court’s decision to deny an injunction against instituting random drug and alcohol testing at the TTC in Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 113 v Toronto Transit Commission and whether this decision will have broader implications with respect to random testing. We also discuss recent changes to the Courts of […]


How to Enforce Your Employment Rights & What Happens if There is Reprisal

The majority of employees in this province are subject to employment laws such as the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “ESA”), the Ontario Human Rights Code (the “Code”), and the Occupational Health and Safety Act (the “OHSA”) which have enshrined various rights of employees, and obligations of employers.  Some of the employment law rights and duties which repeatedly come up […]


Reading the Fine Print

Imagine the scene: one day, just like any other, you’re sitting at your desk planning to pack up and head home soon when you are unexpectedly called into a meeting in the boardroom. You enter the boardroom to find your manager and the head of Human Resources sitting around the table. You’ve been around long enough to know what’s happening, […]


Latest Chapter In Employment Law: Potentially Dramatic Changes To Employment Legislation And Another Court Of Appeal Decision On Termination Clauses

In this edition of The Latest Chapter, we discuss the Changing Workplaces Review, which could trigger the most significant reforms to Ontario’s employment and labour law statutes in decades. We also note the Ontario Court of Appeal’s latest decision in Wood v Deeley, which could significantly impact how employment agreements and termination provisions are drafted and enforced in Ontario. The […]


Google Hangout: Assessing Notice Periods and Severance Obligations

When it comes to dismissals, there is no shortage of questions. How much “severance” are you entitled to? Can the employer provide working notice? Is the employee entitled to anything more than the applicable employment standards legislation? What is “just cause” for dismissal? What is the difference between “termination pay”, “severance pay”, “reasonable notice”, and “severance”? Is there a difference […]


Clearing Up Common Misconceptions About Termination and Severance Pay

There continues to be a plethora of myths and misconceptions when it comes to the termination of the employment relationship. We are asked the same questions time and time again, including: Can an employer make a dismissed employee work through the notice period? Is a dismissed employee entitled to a lump sum? What happens if a dismissed employee finds new […]


Wood v Deeley: Court of Appeal Strikes Down Termination Clause

The ongoing saga of judicial  interpretation of termination clauses continues: yesterday, the Ontario Court of Appeal released its long-awaited ruling in Wood v Deeley. The Court overturned the lower court decision and struck out the clause in question. The outcome has the potential to have a wide-ranging impact on how employment agreements and termination provisions are drafted and enforced in Ontario. […]



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