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Hamilton Employment Law

Ed Canning has been practicing exclusively in the areas of employment law and human rights for 23 years in the City of Hamilton, representing both employers and employees. For 20 years, he has been writing a bi-weekly column in The Hamilton Spectator on employment law and human rights issues that are of interest to both employers and employees. In this blog, you can have access to approximately 500 articles on various subject matters ranging from Employment Standards Act issues, wrongful dismissal issues to human rights issues.

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Blog Posts

CONTRACTS - THERE MUST BE AN EXCHANGE FOR CONTRACTS TO BE ENFORCEABLE

Whether or not a written employment agreement exists, the law views the employment relationship as a contract between an employer and employee.  In any contractual situation, in order for one party to prove that a contract exists, it must prove not only that a promise was made but that the other party got something for making the promise.  Put another way, the party trying to prove the contract must show that they gave something up of value to gain the promise (contract) they say exists.
 

BEING PUNISHED FOR MATERNITY LEAVES NOT LEGAL

QUESTION:  While my employment contract states that I am to be paid salary, last week I was told that I was being switched to hourly pay.  As a result  any time I miss from work will be docked from my pay.  Recently, my employer indicated to me that by having three children in the five and a half years of my employment, I am taking advantage of the company's good will.  Ironically, I only took twelve weeks off work for each child.  I have been told that while it is one thing to burden my life by having my children so close together, I was also creating a burden for the company.  Last week I took a day off work to take my baby to the hospital and immediately after I was changed from salary to hourly.  Can they do this?
 

BEING PUNISHED FOR MATERNITY LEAVES NOT LEGAL

QUESTION:  While my employment contract states that I am to be paid salary, last week I was told that I was being switched to hourly pay.  As a result  any time I miss from work will be docked from my pay.  Recently, my employer indicated to me that by having three children in the five and a half years of my employment, I am taking advantage of the company's good will.  Ironically, I only took twelve weeks off work for each child.  I have been told that while it is one thing to burden my life by having my children so close together, I was also creating a burden for the company.  Last week I took a day off work to take my baby to the hospital and immediately after I was changed from salary to hourly.  Can they do this?
 

RELEASE DEADLINE MEANS NOTHING

Today I offer up a nugget of information that might save you considerable anxiety should you ever be terminated and receive a severance offer. 
 

RELEASE DEADLINE MEANS NOTHING

Today I offer up a nugget of information that might save you considerable anxiety should you ever be terminated and receive a severance offer. 
 

DEFINING HARASSMENT, SEXUAL AND OTHER

There is a commonly held mistaken belief that there is a law against harassing employees.  In fact, there really is no such law.  It is almost astounding how often I hear of situations in which employees are accusing their employer of harassment.  The term harassment is used as if the very utterance of the phrase should make employers quake in their boots.  The phrase is spoken as if harassment is a legal concept recognized by all courts and leading to dire consequences for the perpetrator.  None of this is the case.  The only legal context in which harassment has any meaning is the Ontario Human Rights Code.  It prohibits sexual harassment and harassment generally on the basis of one’s age, colour, creed, etc.  If you are being harassed as a result of one of those factors, there are indeed legal consequences for that behaviour.
 

DEFINING HARASSMENT, SEXUAL AND OTHER

There is a commonly held mistaken belief that there is a law against harassing employees.  In fact, there really is no such law.  It is almost astounding how often I hear of situations in which employees are accusing their employer of harassment.  The term harassment is used as if the very utterance of the phrase should make employers quake in their boots.  The phrase is spoken as if harassment is a legal concept recognized by all courts and leading to dire consequences for the perpetrator.  None of this is the case.  The only legal context in which harassment has any meaning is the Ontario Human Rights Code.  It prohibits sexual harassment and harassment generally on the basis of one’s age, colour, creed, etc.  If you are being harassed as a result of one of those factors, there are indeed legal consequences for that behaviour.
 

RIGHT TO PRIVACY TO BECOME LAW

The Ontario Government is considering a draft piece of privacy legislation that will significantly impact the way employers handle confidential information arising out of pension and benefit plans. 
Traditionally, employers have always respected that employees have the right to privacy with respect to what treatments and medications for which they are seeking compensation through the benefits plan and with respect to the details of their pension entitlements.
 

RIGHT TO PRIVACY TO BECOME LAW

The Ontario Government is considering a draft piece of privacy legislation that will significantly impact the way employers handle confidential information arising out of pension and benefit plans. 
Traditionally, employers have always respected that employees have the right to privacy with respect to what treatments and medications for which they are seeking compensation through the benefits plan and with respect to the details of their pension entitlements.
 

GENEROUS AWARD FOR WRONGFUL DISMISSAL

A man we will call Jimmy worked as the regional manager of a trucking company in British Columbia for almost 18 years.