How do Bill 148 amendments to the ESA affect existing collective agreements?

It is hard to imagine a question more pressing for Ontario employers of unionized employees.

For the most part, the Bill 148 amendments to the ESA minimum standards will apply to unionized workplaces as of the effective date of the particular amendment. More specifically, Bill 148 ESA amendments – including with respect to the minimum wage, vacation entitlements, personal emergency leave and the new Domestic and Sexual Violence Leave – will “trump” a collective agreement if:

  • the amendment provides a greater right or benefit than the employees are entitled to under the collective agreement;
  • the amendment imposes a more onerous obligation on the employer than in the collective agreement; or
  • the collective agreement is silent with respect to the Bill 148 obligation or entitlement.

There is only a handful of other specific circumstances in which an existing collective agreement provision may prevail over Bill 148 ESA amendments.

Check out our blog tomorrow to learn how an existing collective agreement provision addressing “equal pay for equal work” may prevail over two of the Bill 148 amendments.

What rights does an employer have to suspend an employee in Germany?

Under German law, an employer can only suspend an employee in certain cases. One of the core obligations of the employment relationship is an obligation on the employer to provide the employee with relevant work to be performed. If it fails to do so without justification, it must nevertheless continue to pay the employee. Notwithstanding this, a mutual agreement to suspend the employee, whether paid or unpaid, is of course always possible.

Suspension without continued payment of remuneration

An employer may not suspend an employee without payment of salary unless it is explicitly provided for by law or in collective rules (in some cases these impose an obligation on the employer to suspend). As an employer fully bears the operational risk of its business, it is in particular not possible for it to suspend the employee for merely financial reasons. Examples of the right to suspend an employee provided for by law include: the suspension of a pregnant employee during the statutory maternity protection periods (set periods before and after childbirth); during parental leave (a voluntary leave intended for childcare); in certain cases during the illness of a child; and during part-time retirement. Further, in labour disputes, German courts have – within strict boundaries – recognised an employer’s right to unilaterally suspend an employee without continued payment of salary in order to achieve parity in the dispute.

Suspension with continued payment of remuneration

An employer is also limited in its ability to unilaterally suspend an employee with continued payment of remuneration. The employer may be required to suspend the employee in order to enforce holiday, for example, if the employee refuses to take outstanding holiday and the employer would need to compensate the employee for outstanding holiday (e.g. where the employment is coming to an end). Otherwise, German courts allow for suspension only where there is a material reason to do so and where the interests of the employer outweigh those of the employee. Although this always requires a case-by-case assessment, the employer may be entitled to suspend the employee for the duration of the notice period, e.g. in cases of an ordinary dismissal by reason of misconduct. Where dismissal is based on operational reasons (i.e. redundancy), a suspension will be permitted only in (rare) cases where the employee’s redundancy occurs with immediate and definitive effect. In cases of a dismissal for cause and during the consultation phase with the works council or pending the approval of the necessary authorities (e.g. in cases of a pregnant or disabled employee), the “compelling reason” required by German law for the justification of a such dismissal will almost in all cases also justify the immediate suspension of the employee.

Where the suspension is irrevocable, the employer can cause any outstanding holiday as well as any overtime hours of the employee to be “used up” during the suspension and notice period (therefore avoiding any otherwise necessary compensation to be paid at the end of the employment). As a result a mutual and, where justified, unilateral suspension of an employee after the termination of the employment is common in practice. Such crediting of holiday and overtime hours, however, is not possible where the suspension can be revoked, i.e. if the employer can require the employee to come back to work.

In case of a suspension, there is generally no obligation on the employer to involve the works council.

Some Bill 148 reforms to the Ontario ESA are already in effect.

Here’s what you need to know.

On November 27th The Ontario Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act 2017 (Bill 148) received Royal Assent and passed into law. This is hardly likely to be news to anyone, given the amount of press Bill 148 has received and the numerous announcements and backgrounder reports the Ontario government issued last month.

What some employers may have missed, however, is that the following three Bill 148 reforms to the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) are already in effect.

Employee Misclassification

Effective November 27, 2017, it is a contravention of the ESA to misclassify and treat an employee – whether deliberately or not – as a self-employed “independent contractor” not entitled to the protections of the ESA.  In the event of a misclassification dispute, the onus is on the employer to prove that the individual is not an employee.

As a result of this change, employers will have to be even more conscientious in their due diligence prior to engaging with an independent contractor.  Employers will also have to keep the work relationship with independent contractors separate and distinct from relationships with employees, as has always been the case.

Increases to parental leave

Changes the federal government made with respect to the Employment Insurance regime have resulted in a consequential change to the ESA parental leave entitlement.  Parental leave has increased from 35 weeks to a maximum of 61 weeks for an employee who also took pregnancy leave, and from 37 weeks to a maximum of 63 weeks for employees who did not take pregnancy leave (for example, birth partners and adoptive parents).  The parental leave amendment took effect on December 3, 2017.

Critical Illness Leave  

Also effective December 3, 2017, an employee with at least six consecutive months’ service is entitled to an unpaid leave of absence without pay to provide care or support to a critically ill minor child  or adult family member, if a qualified health practitioner issues a certificate that, (a) states that the minor child/adult family member is critically ill and requires the care or support of one or more family members; and (b) sets out the period during which the minor child/adult family member requires the care or support.

Eligible employees may take up to 37 weeks of leave in a 52-week period to provide care or support to a critically ill minor child, and up to 17 weeks of leave in a 52-week period to provide care or support to a critically ill adult family member.

Keep an eye out for NRFC’s future posts on Bill 148 ESA reforms that will come into effect on January 1, 2018, April 1, 2018 and January 1, 2019.  In the meantime, the Ontario Ministry of Labour’s November 22, 2017 Backgrounder provides a handy summary of key amendments to the ESA.

Bericht zur Gleichstellung und Entgeltgleichheit erstmals in 2018 aufzustellen!

Die Umsetzung guter Vorsätze: Erstmaliger Entgeltbericht nach dem Entgelttransparenzgesetz

Ganz oben auf der To-Do-Liste für 2018 steht – neben den Vorsätzen für das neue Jahr – für viele Unternehmen die erstmalige Aufstellung des Berichts zur Gleichstellung und Entgeltgleichheit nach dem Entgelttransparenzgesetz. Der Bericht ist im Jahr 2018 erstmals zu erstellen – Berichtszeitraum ist dabei das Kalenderjahr 2016 – und dem nächsten Lagebericht nach § 289 HGB als Anlage beizufügen sowie im Bundesanzeiger zu veröffentlichen.

Wer ist betroffen?

Betroffen sind alle Arbeitgeber mit in der Regel mehr als 500 Beschäftigten, die zur Erstellung eines Lageberichts (§§ 264 und 289 HGB) verpflichtet sind. Dazu ist bei lageberichtspflichtigen Unternehmen die Anzahl der in der Regel beschäftigten Arbeitnehmer zu bestimmen. Hier ist von der Anzahl der Arbeitnehmer des im regelmäßigen Gang befindlichen Betriebes auszugehen. Maßgebend ist das normale Maß, nicht die Zahl der Arbeitnehmer im Jahresdurchschnitt oder zu einem bestimmten Stichtag. Diese Betrachtungsweise entspricht der des BetrVG oder auch des DrittelbG und des MitbestG. Im Konzern sind Tochterunternehmen beim Konzernabschluss ggf. von der Berichtspflicht ausgenommen. Hier können sich allerdings Folgefragen ergeben, z.B. wenn die Konzernmuttergesellschaft den Schwellenwert von in der Regel mehr als 500 Arbeitnehmern selbst nicht erfüllt. Eine Konzernberichtspflicht ist gesetzlich nicht geregelt.

Was muss berichtet werden?

In dem Bericht sind (1.) Maßnahmen zur Förderung der Gleichstellung von Frauen und Männern und deren Wirkungen sowie (2.) Maßnahmen zur Herstellung von Entgeltgleichheit für Frauen und Männer getrennt voneinander darzustellen. Arbeitgeber, die keine derartigen Maßnahmen durchgeführt haben, müssen das nachvollziehbar begründen. Außerdem muss der Bericht nach Geschlecht aufgeschlüsselte Angaben zur durchschnittlichen Gesamtzahl der Beschäftigten sowie zur durchschnittlichen Zahl der Vollzeit- und Teilzeitbeschäftigten enthalten.

Das Entgelttransparenzgesetz sieht keine Sanktionen für den Fall vor, dass der Bericht nicht oder fehlerhaft erstellt wird. Die Öffentlichkeitswirkung fehlender Berichte und eine mögliche Indizwirkung in Diskriminierungsfällen sollten jedoch nicht unterschätzt werden.

Was gilt in den Folgejahren?

Der nächste Bericht steht erst wieder in 2021 bzw. 2023 an, abhängig davon, ob der Arbeitgeber tarifgebunden bzw. tarifanwendend ist. Dieser zweite Bericht wird sich nur auf das letzte Kalenderjahr im Berichtszeitraum beziehen und muss zusätzlich die Veränderungen im Vergleich zum ersten Bericht angeben.

 

¿What rights does an employer have to suspend an employee?

In Colombia, Article 51 of the Labor Code states the causes for suspension of the labor contract, including among others, the faculty of the employer to suspend the employee(s) due to serious misconduct after conducting a disciplinary investigation. In this case, the law limits the sanction to eight (8) days of suspension of the activities for the first time and up to two (2) months when it happens again.

The suspension is one of the disciplinary measures contamplated in the law and the employer could suspend the employee for a different number of days as long as it respects the abovementioned limit. In fact, in the Internal working regulations (Reglamento de Trabajo) –which is a mandatory document according to Colombian lawusually mentions the corresponding days of suspension depending on different factors such as: failure to comply with the labor obligations and the employer´s industry. For instance, in a medical institution the punctuality is a key aspect, thus the sanction could be more severe than in other companies.

When an employer is interested in starting a disciplinary procedure against an employee to sanction him/her, it must send a formal communication listing the misconducts as well as the facts and legal provisions that served as grounds (which can be verbal or written). During this process, the employee has the right to defend himself/herself and even appeal to the employer’s decision to sanction.

On the other hand, the fact that an employee has been sanctioned more than once could lead to the termination of the labor contract. In this sense, if the employee has been suspended repeatedly for the same action, the employer has the faculty to terminate his/her labor contract with cause.

Finally, during the suspension period of the labor contract the employer is not obliged to pay salary, since the employee is not rendering any services. The employer can deduct such period at the final liquidation for severance aid payment and vacations. However, the employer shall continue to pay the contributions to the Social Security System in health and pension. There is no obligation to pay contributions to the General System of Labor Risks since there is no risk of labor accident or occupational illness.

 

What rights does an employer have to suspend an employee in France?

Under French labour law, there are limited circumstances under which employers may suspend employees.

One of the main obligations imposed on employers is to provide employees with work to be performed  (and obviously to pay them in consideration for their work). Breach of this requirement may be considered as a ground for breach of contract, and the relevant employee can claim the equivalent of constructive dismissal which  in practice has the same consequences as an unfair dismissal).

In practice, there are two types of suspensions provided by the French labour code:

1. Disciplinary suspension (“mise à pied disciplinaire”)

This measure consists of diverting the employee from the company, for a temporary period of time (usually a few days), as a disciplinary sanction for an employee’s misconduct. Such disciplinary sanction must be justified by the existence of sufficiently important misconduct by the employee.

During the period of suspension, the employee’s employment agreement is suspended, and the employee is not entitled to any remuneration.

At the end of the suspension period, the employee may normally resumes his duties.

The ability for the employer to discipline an employee through a temporary suspension must be provided in the company’s internal regulations (“règlement intérieur”) which must in particular set out the maximum duration thereof. In the absence of such a provision, the employee may claim the cancellation of the suspension. In addition, the employer must comply with French law requirements relating to disciplinary procedures in particular, the notification of the sanction must be made in writing, the letter setting out the reasons for the sanction taken).

2. Suspension in the context of an investigation (“mise à pied conservatoire”)

This measure is not a disciplinary sanction per se. It is a protective measure implemented pending the results of an investigation (which may itself lead to a disciplinary sanction being taken against the employee, most often a dismissal).

Such measure enables the employer to temporarily divert from the company an employee suspected of certain kinds of misconduct for the period of time necessary to determine whether such employee can actually be incriminated and the appropriate sanction for his/her acts.

Such suspension must be notified in writing to the employee concerned, and case law has held that the employer must immediately initiate a disciplinary procedure against the employee.

During the period of suspension in the context of an investigation, the employee must be remunerated  contrary to the disciplinary suspension). However, if the investigation leads to a dismissal measure against the employee based on serious or wilful misconduct, the employee’s remuneration is not due for the period of suspension.

Enforcement of the right to paid holiday under the UK Working Time Regulations ruled incompatible with the EU Directive

The Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) has ruled that the method of enforcement of the right to paid holiday in the UK Working Time Regulations (WTR) is incompatible with the EU Working Time Directive. This is because, if an employer refuses to pay a worker for a period of holiday, under the provisions of the WTR, the worker has to take the leave unpaid before he can bring a claim for payment. The ECJ considers that this denies workers an effective remedy for an employer’s failure to provide paid holiday. Furthermore where an employer refuses to pay for holiday, the right to accrued unused holiday carries over until the termination of employment.

Facts of the case 

In the case in question, King v The Sash Window Workshop Ltd (Case C-214/16), the claimant ostensibly worked for the employer as a self-employed contractor from June 1999. He was offered an employment contract in 2008 but chose to continue working on a self-employed basis. This meant that any holiday he took was unpaid. On termination of his engagement in 2012, the claimant made a claim for holiday pay and was successful on the basis that he was in fact a worker and therefore entitled to paid holiday including payment for holiday accrued but untaken over the previous years.

When the case came before the Court of Appeal, the Court referred a number of questions to the ECJ including whether the provisions of the WTR are consistent with the right to paid annual leave under the Working Time Directive, given that (on the logic of the Employment Appeal Tribunal’s analysis) the worker would first have to take unpaid leave before testing his entitlement to pay. It also sought clarification of the right to carry over accrued untaken holiday.

The ECJ’s ruling 

The ECJ noted that it was clear from its case law that a worker must be entitled to benefit from the right to pay when taking annual leave. Therefore a worker who is faced with uncertainty about whether he will be paid during annual leave will not be able to benefit fully from that leave as a period of relaxation and leisure, and is likely to be dissuaded from taking leave in the first place.

Effective remedy under the WTR?

The ECJ also noted that, on the EAT’s interpretation of the relevant provisions of the WTR, a worker can claim breach of the right to paid holiday only to the extent that the employer did not allow him to take leave, whether paid or not; and can claim payment only for leave actually taken. This has the effect that, where the employer grants only unpaid leave, a worker is obliged to take leave without pay in the first place and then to bring an action to claim payment for it. The ECJ ruled that this result was incompatible with the Working Time Directive.

Right to carry over accrued untaken leave

On the question of the right to carry over any accrued but untaken leave, the ECJ noted that, in the case of a worker who is prevented from taking paid annual leave due to sickness, case law has permitted national law to limit the worker’s right to carry over that leave to 15 months. However, where an employer has refused to pay a worker during annual leave, a temporal restriction is not appropriate. The ECJ therefore concluded that the Directive requires a worker to be able to carry over and accumulate paid annual leave rights until the termination of employment where those rights have not been exercised over several consecutive reference periods because the employer refused to pay him during that leave.

It was irrelevant that the employer in the case considered, wrongly, that the claimant was not entitled to paid annual leave – it is up to the employer to inform itself of its obligations and an employer that does not allow a worker to exercise the right to paid annual leave must bear the consequences.

Implications of the ruling for employers 

The ECJ’s ruling will have a significant impact on workers’ rights to recover payment for accrued unused holiday. In particular, where a worker has been deliberately or mistakenly classified as self-employed and has therefore been denied payment for any holiday taken, he may be able to claim back pay in respect of unpaid annual leave going back many years when his ‘worker’ status is established. It also suggests that the Deduction from Wages (Limitation) Regulations, which limit back pay claims to two years, are incompatible with EU law.

 

 

 

On the Job + On the Grid: Monitoring Employees

There are many varied and valid reasons as to why employers incorporate monitoring in the workplace.  Whether it is the more widespread video surveillance cameras installed in many convenience stores or the seemingly nefarious GPS tracking in employees’ phones, employers can effectively monitor their workplaces without running afoul of their privacy obligations.

With the widespread use of new and affordable technology, the BC Information and Privacy Commissioner has published new guidance on this topic.

BC’s Personal Information Protection Act (“PIPA”) sets out how private organizations can collect, use, and disclose personal information, including that of its employees. While PIPA legislates employees’ right to privacy in the workplace in BC, considering common law principles associated with the employment relationship and privacy, these guidelines are also helpful for employers who operate in provinces without privacy legislation.

The guidelines highlight considerations for employers implementing the following types of monitoring:

  • Video + Audio Surveillance: this is seemingly ubiquitous in today’s world. Some organizations employ these technologies to catch and deter criminal activity and other inappropriate behaviour. However, if employees are caught on camera, whether purposefully or not, it is a collection of their personal information. There is a high threshold for employers to use video surveillance on its employees: it must be reasonable for the purpose of creating, managing, or terminating an employment relationship. An organization ought to first explore less privacy-invasive methods. Organizations have been found to have offended the law in taking excessive video without authorization and in failing to limit retention or secure it from unauthorized access.
  • IT Monitoring: while software tools to protect against malware and unauthorized access of certain systems are often necessary in the workplace, they can also lead to the over-collection of personal information about employees. Organizations are within their rights to ensure that employees are working while at work and not spending inordinate amounts of time shopping online or watching cat videos. However, organizations must notify employees that they will be monitored and why their personal information is being collected. In Investigation Report F1501, the Commissioner found that the employer could only collect personal information that was directly related to and necessary for the protection of its IT systems and infrastructure.
  • GPS Tracking: in some circumstances, organizations can track employees through GPS monitoring either through installing an application on employees’ phones or installing GPS in vehicles. Regardless of whether the phones or vehicles are company-issued, this information is generally considered personal information of the employee associated with the device. While continuous monitoring of employees outside of work hours would likely be considered excessive and invasive, there are ways in which GPS tracking can be justified if implemented in a reasonably limited manner. For example, in OIPC Order P12-01 an employer installed GPS in its company vehicles to ensure employee safety as well as to facilitate client billing, which was permissible. This decision, and others, highlights the importance of context and purpose for the monitoring, reasonable limitations, as well as appropriate notice requirements.

Private organizations collecting personal information for purposes reasonably required to establish, manage, or terminate an employment relationship, may give notice to their employees.  Otherwise, BC, Alberta, and federal works and undertakings must obtain consent.

Finally, the BC Commissioner recommends that prior to conducting any employee monitoring, organizations should conduct a privacy impact assessment as prescribed by a privacy policy. For more information on privacy policies, see A Guide to BC’s PIPA.

A Framework for Modern Employment – House of commons report.

The Work and Pensions and Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committees have published a joint report on “A framework for modern employment” (the Report) which considers how the employment framework should be amended to reflect the modern workplace.

The Report acknowledges that “the expansion of self-employment and business models built around flexible work on digital platforms promise positive opportunities for entrepreneurs, workers and consumers alike”, but also stresses that the changes can also create confusion as to the rights and entitlements for workers and can add to the potential for exploitation. The Committees have therefore looked at the recommendations made by Matthew Taylor in his Review of Modern Employment Practices (the Taylor Report).  In addition, the Committees have produced a draft Bill that includes many of the recommendations of the Taylor Report.  The main recommendations of the Committees are:

  • Employment status. Entitlement to employment rights and protections is determined by employment status. The existing statutory definitions of employment status are set out in s230 Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA). This is supplemented by case law. The Report follows the recommendations of the Taylor Report that greater legislative clarity is required and a first draft of the legislation defining the employment status is set out in the draft Bill, which reflects many of the points from case law. It also provides that the courts may also have regard to whether the worker was engaged in marketing their business before the contract came into existence, and whether any substitution clause is, in practice, capable of being freely exercised by the individual.
  • Worker status by default.   Another proposal in the draft Bill is implementing a worker by default model, which would then place the burden on an employer to prove that an individual is not a worker rather than placing the burden on the individual themselves. The Report states that this presumption of worker status would apply to companies who have a self-employed workforce above a certain size defined in secondary legislation.
  • Non-guaranteed hours. The Taylor Report had recommended that a higher rate of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) or National Living Wage (NLW) should be introduced for hours that are not guaranteed as part of the contract (i.e for those employees on zero hours contracts). This Report suggests that the Government should work with the Low Pay Commission (LPC) to pilot such a pay premium arrangement. The LPC would also be consulted on the rate at which the premium should be set, the potential impact on marginal hours of employment and compliance.
  • Continuous service. A range of employment rights are only available to employees who have completed a minimum level of continuous service. However, under the ERA, continuous service is broken by any one week in which a workers is not covered by a contract. For flexible workers this can be an issue. The Report therefore recommends that the Government extend the time allowed for a break in service from one week to one month.
  • Employment tribunals. The current employment tribunal rules enable class actions where the cases are based on the same set of fact, meaning that their use is very limited. The Report considers that employees should be able to bring ‘class actions’ in the Employment Tribunal for certain types of claims, including claims for unlawful deduction of wages, worker status, and under the Working Time Regulations..
  • Flexibility and the National Minimum Wage. Interestingly however, the committee has rejected Matthew Taylor’s suggestions on adapting the existing piece rate legislation to calculate pay for those workers on the gig economy.   The Taylor Report noted that working time should be sensibly calculated and that “no individual should be expecting to be paid for all that the time that he or she has the app open (regardless of whether or not they are seeking work).”   The Taylor Report suggested that the Government could adapt the piece rate legislation to enable platforms to compensate workers based on output. This would also include a requirement for certain conditions to be satisfied so that a platform worker could earn less than the NMW or NLW, including a requirement for the company to provide information to the worker about the level of work they could expect to earn at a given time. The Report however suggests that this proposal is overly complex and risks undermining the NMW/NLW by inviting workers to choose to work for a lower rate of pay.
  • Written statement of terms and conditions. The requirement for employers to provide a written statement of terms and conditions should be extended to workers, as well as employees and should specify the individual’s status. The right to receive this statement should apply from day one and the statement should be provided within seven days of starting work.

The Report anticipates that there should be strong support across all parties for taking these reforms forward. It will be interesting to see whether any of these recommendations or the wording in the draft bill is taken forward.

When emotions run a-Mok: Trial judge’s decision upheld in Sweeting v Mok, 2017 ONCA 203

As an employer, you need to be careful what you say in the heat of the moment. That is the takeaway from the Ontario Court of Appeal’s recent decision in Sweeting v. Mok, 2017 ONCA 203.

In this case, there was a dispute between Ms. Sweeting and her employer, Dr. Lawrence Man-Suen Mok. After a heated conversation, Dr. Mok angrily told Ms. Sweeting to “Go! Get out! I am so sick of coming into this office every day and seeing your ugly face.”

On these words, Ms. Sweeting left the office and brought a legal action against Dr. Mok for wrongful dismissal. Based on the facts of the case, both the trial judge and the Ontario Court of Appeal found that Dr. Mok’s words were enough to terminate Ms. Sweeting’s employment.

Facts

Ms. Sweeting was a registered practical nurse who had worked in Dr. Mok’s medical office for 22 years as his practice assistant and office manager.

Dr. Mok admitted that Ms. Sweeting was indispensable to his office – she was a top notch nurse and administrator. At a certain point, however, Dr. Mok’s secretary left and Ms. Sweeting became overworked.

This led to an altercation over the implementation of a new electronic medical recording (“EMR”) system in Dr. Mok’s office. Dr. Mok asked Ms. Sweeting to look into it, but Ms. Mok felt that she was too busy.

After several discussions about the EMR, things finally came to a head in a meeting on June 20, 2012.

Although the parties had very different stories about what actually happened during this meeting, the trial judge accepted Ms. Sweeting’s version of events. She said that Dr. Mok just blew up. He yelled at her, swore and waved his arms in the air. And then he finally told her to get out.

Dr. Mok did not intend to fire Ms. Sweeting. However, the trial judge also found that he had no expectation that Ms. Sweeting would return after this incident, nor did he try to rectify any misunderstanding or contact her afterwards.

The Ontario Court of Appeal upheld the trial judge’s decision in favour of Ms. Sweeting. She was awarded 24 months’ notice of termination, equivalent to $120,000.

Takeaway

This case is a reminder that one unfortunate incident will sometimes be enough to irreparably destroy the employment relationship – even if that was not the employer’s intent.

Remember that where there is a dispute in the workplace, you may want to postpone any further discussion until after everyone has had a chance to calm down.

If tempers do flare despite your best efforts, consider contacting legal counsel to see if you can salvage the situation. It may not be possible in all cases, but if employers act quickly to remedy the situation they may be able to avoid legal action and an inadvertent termination of employment.

Written in collaboration with Justine Smith, articling student.

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