We have started the last month of 2019 and it is time for my annual top Employment Law stories of the year.
2019 has been a relatively good news year for Ontario employers.
On January 1, 2019, the new Conservative provincial government started the year by delaying (likely indefinitely) the implementation of the Pay Transparency Act and by repealing a $1 per hour increase in the minimum wage that would have otherwise taken effect on January 1, 2019.
Here are my top 5 stories for 2019:
1. The Ontario Court of Appeal clearly stated that the maximum common law reasonable notice period is 24 months, absent extraordinary circumstances. Click here for a summary of this decision.
2. The Ontario government implemented Bill 66 which introduced some employer-friendly amendments to the Employment Standards Act. Click here for a summary of these changes.
3. The uncertainty surrounding the legal enforceability of termination clauses continued and as a result many trial decisions continued to be appealed to the Ontario Court of Appeal. Click here, here and here and here for summaries of four such decisions. I hope one of these cases is appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada who will hopefully provide some much needed guidance to employment lawyers on this issue.
4. The uncertainty surrounding whether or not a judge will order an employer to pay an employee variable compensation during the applicable notice period continues. Click here for a summary of one such case.
5. The costs of alleging just cause when cause cannot be proved keeps going up. Click here for a summary of a case where a court ordered an employer to pay aggravated damages, and click here for a large damage award that was issued against Wal-Mart.
Fun Fact: In 2019 the MacLeod Law Firm was again nominated as one of Canada’s top employment and labour law boutiques by the Canadian Lawyer Magazine.
For over 30 years, Doug MacLeod of the MacLeod Law Firm has been advising employers on all aspects of the employment relationship. If you have any questions, you can contact him directly at 416-317-9894 or at [email protected]