Courting Marijuana and Measures of Impairment

As the legalization of recreational marijuana is approaching, many employers are struggling to develop policies to respond to this change in policy. Courting Questions of Impairment A frequently asked question is how does an employer know when an employee is impaired...

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Contract Clarity Serves Employers Well

Traditionally, it has been difficult to convince courts to enforce termination clauses in employment contracts. This has been particularly difficult in the Province of Ontario. Commenters have suggested that most of the difficulty for employers stems from the fact...

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From Winter of Discontent to Spring of Equality?

By Graeme McFarlane As we moved through the last few months of 2017, we heard repeated allegations of sexual harassment brought against many high profile public figures. While many of these charges remain just allegations, the underlying factual scenarios follow...

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General Duty of Honesty Only Extends So Far

By Graeme McFarlane In a resounding decision from the Alberta Court of Appeal, the Court rejected the lower court’s decision that had greatly expanded an employer’s obligations to its employees. The lower court had declared that employers were now subject...

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Safety Trumps Belief: Of Hardship and Helmets

By Graeme McFarlane Good employers are concerned about respecting the Human Rights of their employees, and they should be. Sometimes there can be a real tension between respecting Human Rights and the safe management of the workplace. A recent case...

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A Caveat on Contractors: Beware the Bite of the Unicorn?

By Graeme McFarlane Ah, the true independent contractor—the rarest of all the beasts. In the jungle of employment law, it is sought after for its rich cost savings, lower head counts and workplace efficiencies. If only all businesses could have...

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Don’t Dis(miss) the Devil in the Details

By Graeme McFarlane Many businesses have experienced the loss of a valuable employee.  Some are fortunate enough to have that employee return to the fold after venturing out into the unknown.  A recent case, however, illustrates some of the risks...

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If You Promise the Stars…Deliver

By Graeme McFarlane A recent case from Ontario illustrates a shift in judicial thinking with respect to the creation and operation of the employment relationship.  A short service employee won a judgement providing him with $500,000 in extra contractual damages...

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