Rudner Law Blog

As work from home becomes an indefinite reality for many workers across the globe, various governments are considering whether to implement the right to disconnect. Back in 2016, before the pandemic, France introduced legislation allowing employees to turn off their work-related electronic devices outside of regular business hours. Should something like this be implemented in Canada? The Canadian government is currently considering whether the right to disconnect should be legislated.  In light of the COVID-19…
In the recent decision of Kraft v Firepower Financial, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice increased the notice period awarded to the Plaintiff by one additional month in order to account for the impact of the pandemic on the Plaintiff’s ability to find new employment. This is an important decision for employers and employees alike, as it confirms that employees who are able to provide evidence that the pandemic impacted their ability to secure…
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit us all back in March 2020, it felt like time stood still. For quite a few months. Well, when it comes to the period of time you can take to bring a lawsuit (referred to as the limitation period), COVID-19 literally stopped time for around six months. Normally, a claim can be brought within two years of the date of the loss, or alternatively, when such loss was discovered. In…
And how the employer behaves can lead to punitive damages It seems like the dam has burst, and we will now see a flurry of court decisions on the issue of whether a temporary layoff in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic constitutes a constructive dismissal. We have reported on the first decision (Coutinho v. Ocular Health Centre) extensively, and Brittany Taylor has prepared a video blog on the second decision (Taylor v. Hanley
  Brittany Taylor here with another legal update, and this one is a doozy. You’ll likely recall that back in April, Stuart recorded a vlog regarding the Coutinho case, a groundbreaking decision which held for the first time that an employee who was placed on a temporary layoff during the pandemic had been constructively dismissed from their employment. This decision had huge implications for employers, many of whom had no other option but to lay…
You probably know by now that Ontario introduced paid sick leave for employees in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is commonly known as paid Infectious Disease Emergency Leave or IDEL. Eligible employees are entitled to up to three days of paid IDEL for absences from work related to COVID-19. To learn more about the leave, read our blog post here. But employers seem to have questions about how this works in practice. Who…
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?…
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…
  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…
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…