Category: Employment & Labour

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U.S. Immigration Solution: Canada is Open for Business

August 9, 2017

The competition for professional foreign workers continues to increase in many U.S. business sectors. In light of changing U.S. immigration laws and impending reform, however, American companies hiring foreign talent are challenged by how to efficiently and economically recruit and retain their top talent. This article originally appeared in the August 2017 issue of The American Lawyer.  

Cannabis Legalization: Ontario Seeks Public Input to Develop Provincial Laws

July 14, 2017

Ontario’s path towards cannabis regulation took another step forward on July 12, 2017, as the Ontario provincial government released a consultation paper seeking input on how the province should approach cannabis legalization. The consultation paper comes on the heels of the introduction of the federal government’s Cannabis Act in April 2017 (see our April 13, 2017 Blakes Bulletin: Federal Government…

Background Checks by Province: What Employers Need to Know

June 22, 2017

Background screening job candidates is an important part of an employer’s recruitment process. There are several different background checks that are generally permissible in Canada, but employers must tread carefully. An improperly conducted background check — or a properly conducted one where information obtained is improperly used or disclosed — can expose an employer to liability. Therefore, it is critical…

Supreme Court of Canada Rules No Discrimination for Termination of Drug-Addicted Employee

June 20, 2017

On June 15, 2017, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) released its decision in Stewart v. Elk Valley Coal Corp. (Stewart). Stewart is a welcome decision for employers looking to improve and enforce alcohol and drug policies in safety-sensitive workplaces. For related analysis regarding substance abuse in the workplace, see our May 2016 Blakes Bulletin: Suncor Clears Important Hurdle in…

Top 10 Issues for Employers, #10: Terminating an Employee for Poor Performance

June 7, 2017

This is the 10th and final instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series. This instalment addresses terminating an employee for poor performance. OVERVIEW Under Canadian law, employers may unilaterally and immediately end an employment relationship without notice only if they have a valid reason — or “just cause” — for doing so. Absent just cause, employers must provide…

Ontario Introduces Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act to Reform Employment and Labour Law

June 5, 2017

On May 23, 2017, The Changing Workplaces Review – Final Report (Report) was released, recommending major changes to the province’s employment standards and labour relations legislation. For further information on the Report, see our May 2017 Blakes Bulletin: Ontario Considers Major Employment and Labour Law Reform: Key Recommendations and How They Will Impact Employers. The Ontario government promised to move…

Overhaul of Alberta’s Workplace Laws Now Underway

June 5, 2017

Significant changes to Alberta’s workplace laws are coming. On May 24, 2017, the Alberta government introduced Bill 17, the Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act (Bill 17), which proposes the biggest changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code (Employment Standards) and Labour Relations Code (Labour Code) in decades. It will affect all provincially regulated employers and most of the amendments are expected to…

Ontario Considers Major Employment and Labour Law Reform: Key Recommendations and How They Will Impact Employers

May 26, 2017

On May 23, 2017, the Ontario government released The Changing Workplaces Review – Final Report, which recommends a sweeping overhaul to Ontario’s employment standards and labour relations legislation. The government has promised to move quickly on the recommendations which, if adopted, will have a significant impact on employers in Ontario. While there are numerous proposed amendments, the key recommendations are…

Top 10 Issues for Employers, #9: Personal Employee Information

May 18, 2017

This is the ninth instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series. This instalment addresses privacy risks and best practices for employers with respect to the management of personal employee information. OVERVIEW Rapid advances in technology have made it possible for employers to collect all kinds of information during the employment relationship. The information collected about an employee may…

Top 10 Issues for Employers, #8: Employment Considerations in Business Transactions

May 3, 2017

This is the eighth instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series, focusing on employment considerations in business transactions. Specifically, this instalment discusses key employment and labour issues that a prospective buyer (Buyer) of a business (Target) should be alert to before and after entering into a deal. OVERVIEW It is essential to a successful transaction that a Buyer…

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