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Bill 17 – Proposed Changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code

On May 24, 2017, the Government of Alberta tendered and passed first reading of Bill 17: Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act (the “Bill”). The Bill proposes a number of significant amendments to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code and Labour Relations Code. This blog post provides a summary of the key changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code … Continue Reading

Incentive Plans In Alberta Can Still Limit Entitlements to “Actively Employed” Employees

The recent Queen’s Bench decision Styles v. AIMC was widely discussed given that it found an employee was entitled to LTIP awards vesting after termination despite clear contractual language requiring the employee to be “actively employed” on the LTIP payout date.  The Trial Judge found that dismissing an employee without allowing his LTIP grants to vest was “bad faith” in contractual relations (as an unprecedented extension of the principles … Continue Reading

An Agreement In Principle: Canada Pension Plan Expansion

Click here to view the post from our Ontario colleagues on the recent agreement in principle between 8 of the 10 provincial finance ministers and the federal finance minister to expand the Canada Pension Plan.  The post includes steps that Alberta employers could take to anticipate the expected changes.  … Continue Reading

At Least A Few Days After And Never At The Termination Meeting

A recent case out of British Columbia provides a timely reminder of a best practice for Alberta employers. In Saliken v Alpine Aerotech Limited Partnership, 2016 BCSC 832, a relatively short service employee was dismissed, allegedly for just cause. On the termination date the employee was told that he was fired and called to an … Continue Reading

A Brave New World? – Probably Not But Employers Sometimes Have To Deal With 26 Months’ Notice and “Dependant Contractors”

The Ontario Court of Appeal has further shattered the “24 month maximum” myth.  In Keenan v. Canac Kitchens Ltd., the Court of Appeal upheld a Trial Judge’s finding that two long service workers were “dependent contractors” and therefore entitled to 26 months’ reasonable notice on termination. We do not think that this appeal decision is … Continue Reading

Severance Limiting Clauses CAN work especially in Employment Agreements

A recent Ontario Superior Court decision reinforces some basic principles previously discussed on this Blog (and unfortunately often missed or forgotten by employers). In Asgari v 975866 Ontario Ltd, a motion for summary judgment was decided in the Plaintiff’s favour.  One issue was whether a clause, purporting to limit the Plaintiff’s pay in lieu of … Continue Reading

New Alberta Minimum Wage

Our first minimum wage hike took effect today. Alberta’s minimum wage is now $11.20 per hour, which is a $1.00 increase and the third highest in Canada. Servers who serve liquor will see a $1.50 increase, as their minimum wage has risen from $9.20 to $10.70. The differential between servers (who serve liquor) and the … Continue Reading

You Can’t Always Get What You Want…But if You Try Sometimes…You Just Might Find…You Get An Extra 1.5 Months’ Notice

We recently became aware of an interesting Ontario Superior Court decision, decided earlier this year, where the Court awarded the Plaintiff an extra 1.5 months of reasonable notice because his employment was terminated in the month of June. The Court stated: …I find that for a man of Mr. Fraser’s age and level of responsibility … Continue Reading

No Bonus For You! (Sorry You Weren’t Actively Employed)

A recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision upheld a provision in a written bonus program that required an employee to be “actively employed on the date of the bonus payout”. This finding meant that the wrongfully dismissed employee did not receive the value of his bonus during his common law notice period because, as … Continue Reading

Initial Step to $15/hour Minimum Wage Revealed

On May 29, 2015, the Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour issued a statement criticizing the existing formula for minimum wage increases, based on the consumer price index and average weekly earnings. The government promised to undertake targeted consultations with stakeholders throughout the month of June. On June  29, 2015, the Minister announced that … Continue Reading