Rudner Law Blog

Some or all of your employees have been working remotely since March of 2020. You are finally allowed to resume normal operations, so you direct those who have been working from home to return to the workplace in two weeks, but some of them refuse. They are stating that they prefer to continue working from home and have been effectively doing so for well over a year. Can you insist they return to the workplace?…
Hi everyone, I’m Nadia Zaman, associate at Rudner Law, and today I will talk about jury duty and what employers and employees should know about it. You may be aware that as a Canadian citizen, you’re expected to serve jury duty when summoned by your jurisdiction’s courthouse. If you’re an employer, some your workers may be absent for that reason. There is sometimes confusion about jury duty: will the leave be paid, or unpaid? Does…
As you may already know by now, Ontario recently introduced paid sick leave for employees in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pursuant to Bill 284, COVID-19 Putting Workers First Act, 2021, the Ontario Government amended the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “Act“) to provide eligible employees with up to three days of paid Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (“IDEL”) for absences from work related to COVID-19. This entitlement to paid IDEL is: retroactive to…
The answer to the question posed by the title of this week’s blog is, in short: yes, it can. Of course, that doesn’t mean that it always will. Frustration of Contract as a Legal Concept Frustration of contract is a legal concept that is not unique to employment law – it can arise in virtually any situation in which a contractual relationship has been formed. To put it simply, a contract can become “frustrated” where…
  Stuart Rudner here on April 28th, 2021 with breaking employment law news. I’ll get right to the point: a judge of the Ontario Superior Court has confirmed that laying an employee off is a constructive dismissal, even during a pandemic. I cannot overstate the importance of this case – what it means is that many if not most of the employers that laid people off during the pandemic are at risk of being…
  Stuart Rudner here with another Rudner Law employment law update. So, how does an employee’s pregnancy factor into the assessment of their severance if they’re let go? We know that the entitlement to notice of dismissal, or pay in lieu as we often call it, severance, is based on many factors. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not based solely upon length of service, so any rule of thumb, like the ever popular one month…
In Marazzato v Dell Canada Inc., the Ontario Superior Court of Justice provided further commentary on the issue of how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact assessments of reasonable notice at common law.  The employee in this case was 59 years old at the time of dismissal and had accrued 14 years of service with the Company in a senior management role. He argued that he should receive an extended notice period as a result…
I hate to say, “I told you so”, but…we have been saying for over a year that employers risk a finding of constructive dismissal when they lay off employees or even impose cuts in hours and/or compensation, even during a pandemic. What is a Constructive Dismissal? As we explain in more detail on the Constructive Dismissal page of our website, Constructive dismissal involves a unilateral and substantial change to a fundamental term of the employment…
In recent years, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) have come to the forefront and its importance became more widely accepted in theory. However, some organizations pay “lip service” to the concept without actually making meaningful changes, and others would like to make a positive difference but aren’t sure how. So what can workplaces do? The following are seven key points for workplaces to consider in implementing EDI efforts: Check your unconscious bias Unconscious bias refers…
In the recent case of Nahum v. Honeycomb Hospitality Inc., the Ontario Superior Court of Justice confirmed that an employee’s pregnancy is a factor that should be considered when determining reasonable notice upon the termination of their employment. The plaintiff, Ms. Nahum, was employed by the defendant, Honeycomb Hospitality Inc. (“Honeycomb”), as a Director of People and Culture, a human resources position. About four and half months into the role, Ms. Nahum’s employment was…