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Archive for ‘Case Comment’

Wilful Act Required to Prove WSIB Fraud

According to the Ontario Court of Appeal, when the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) charges a worker for “wilfully failing to inform the Board of a material change,” the WSIB must prove a wilful act, and, moreover, that a worker intended to obtain WSIB benefits to which he or she is not entitled to. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

Smelling of Alcohol Not Reasonable Cause to Test for Drugs

A British Columbia Arbitrator recently held in a preliminary award that an employee who reported to work smelling of alcohol did not provide the employer with reasonable cause to test that employee for drugs.

What happened?

. . . [more]
Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Careful, Lawyer’s Communications Are Not Always Protected

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice recently found that the communications and conduct of the employer’s lawyer regarding sexual harassment investigation were not privileged and could be referred to in the employee’s Statement of Claim in the litigation against the employer

What happened?

A long-service employee (employed since 2002), while being placed on a performance improvement plan (PIP), raised allegations that her supervisor was bullying and sexually harassing her. In response, her employer:

  • Conducted an investigation but failed to interview the complainant employee during this process;
  • Concluded that the claims were unsubstantiated.
. . . [more]
Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

Workplace Accident Is Not Enough to Prove Employer Committed General Duty Offence Under OHSA

Following a fatal workplace accident, the Alberta Court of Appeal provided a more comprehensive framework for the actus reus requirement of the general duty provision in Alberta’s Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and clarified that the mere occurrence of a workplace accident does not prove the employer committed a violation.

Fatal workplace accident – Did the employer violate its “general duty” to ensure the health and safety of an employee?

During a “tripping out” procedure on December 20, 2010, at an employer’s drilling rig, an employee suffered a workplace accident and died from blunt cranial trauma and multiple cranial . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Criminal Conviction or Incarceration Does Not Justify Termination

The Administrative Labour Tribunal in Quebec recently held that an employer cannot terminate a worker with a criminal conviction for acts of sexual abuse as it constitutes discrimination based on criminal records. Moreover, the nature of the criminal offence does not automatically justify the dismissal of an employee. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

When Does the Limitation Period for a Wrongful Dismissal Claim Start?

In a recent decision, the Ontario Court of Appeal clarified that the limitation period for a wrongful dismissal claim does not start at the end of employment, but rather as soon as working notice is provided. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

When Does the Limitation Period for a Wrongful Dismissal Claim Start?

In a recent decision, the Ontario Court of Appeal clarified that the limitation period for a wrongful dismissal claim does not start at the end of employment, but rather as soon as working notice is provided. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

Former Employer Accountable for Undiscovered Disability Claim

Reversing the trial judge’s decision, on April 19, 2018, the Court of Appeal for Ontario concluded that an employee can still benefit from a former employer’s long-term disability coverage despite discovering the disability while working for a new employer. The exclusionary language did not limit the long-term disability coverage to current employees, and was extended by the Court to apply to undisclosed disability claims that arose during employment.

Was the former employer really accountable to provide LTD coverage even after the employee quit? Here’s what happened: . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Why a Scent-Free Policy Not a Solution in the Detection of Cannabis Impairment

There is a recent article that suggested that implementing a scent-free or fragrance-free environment policy would help employers know if their employee is high at work from cannabis use, and what actions to take when they catch them high at work.

Most people are familiar with smoking dried cannabis in hand-rolled cigarettes, pipes or water pipes-but people can consume cannabis in many forms, including: “vaping”; eaten in cannabis-infused foods called “edibles” (e.g., cooking oils and drinks); applied as oils, ointments, tinctures, cream and concentrates (e.g., butane hash oil, resins and waxes); and of course, ingested as oral pills and oral . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation