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Employee’s Rights: Short-Term and Long-Term Disability During COVID-19

COVID-19 illness or stress as a result of the pandemic may render employees unable to work. Disability insurance is an important benefit that should not be overlooked in these circumstances. Currently, many employees, who have not been outright terminated, may be temporarily laid off or be subject to various reduced hours plans. Some workplaces provide …

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COVID-19 and the Workplace: What Employees Need to Know (Updated August 9, 2020)

The content of this post is constantly updated and it presents the most recent information as of August 9, 2020. Since mid-March 2020, we have answered hundreds of calls from employees in Ontario about their entitlements and options during the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees often feel they are presented with ultimatums and cannot afford to pay …

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What Are An Employee’s Minimum Entitlements Under The Ontario Employment Standards Act?

Under the Employment Standards Act (ESA), there are three key minimum entitlements an employee is entitled to in the event of termination without cause: 1) notice of termination or pay in lieu thereof, 2) benefit continuation and 3) severance pay. Those entitlements compose your severance package. a) What is notice of termination or pay in …

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The Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy Debate: Look Across the Pond For Options

The COVID-19 crisis has spawned an interesting array of emergency schemes by governments to provide assistance to those who have lost employment as a result of the downturns. It is instructive to consider the similarities and differences. The United Kingdom has enacted direct support to workers and it could be a good source of inspiration …

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Ontario Suspends Limitation Periods: Time for Virtual Mediations

More time to file your employment claims: Ontario uses emergency powers to suspend legal limitation periods and lawyers turn to virtual mediations. As of March 17, 2020, the Ontario government declared an emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the court system has been shut down to minimize the risk of exposure to …

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Government Support for Employees during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Employment Insurance, Temporary and Long Term Support

The content of this post is constantly updated and it presents the most recent information as of June 26, 2020. On March 18, 2020, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced new economic measures to help stabilize the economy during this difficult period. Following the announcement, on March 25, 2019, the federal COVID-19 Emergency Response Act  (the “CERA”) …

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Ontario Employees: Unpaid Job-Protected Emergency Leave Available to Those Affected by the COVID-19

The content of this post is constantly updated and it presents the most recent information as of June 29, 2020. On March 17, 2020, the Ontario government declared an emergency under s 7.0.1 (1) the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act. On June 24 2020, Ontario extended the declaration of emergency until July 15, 2020. On …

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Temporary Layoffs in Ontario Due to Coronavirus and Employee Rights

The information in this blog post is current to September 9, 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic and its associated economic impact have created many significant challenges for both employers and employees in Ontario. Ontario made a declaration of emergency on March 17, 2020 and has ordered a shutdown of several sectors of the economy. Many employers …

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Ontario Employees Rights During the Coronavirus School Shutdown, Illness and Quarantine

On March 12, 2020, the Ontario government announced that public schools will be closed in an attempt to stop the spread of coronavirus COVID-19.  While our young ones are excited by the prospect, parents are scrambling to find alternatives. Lots of difficult questions arise including: Will I lose my job if I have to stay …

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2020 Good News For Gig Economy Workers – Private High School Settles Class Action by Teachers Misclassified as Independent Contractors

The difficulty of landing full time teaching jobs at the big school boards has created a large pool of underemployed qualified teachers and a ready supply of staff to take on short-term teaching gigs on a contractual basis. In many fields, more university graduates are produced than the economy needs. In recent years, over 40 …

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