As an employer, you have rights and entitlements under the law. You also have obligations. We will make sure you honour your obligations and obtain all of the protection you are entitled to.
Hiring & Employment Contracts: From drawing up airtight employment contracts to structuring clear non-compete clauses, we can make sure you establish firm, clear guidelines for every employee you hire or promote. The terms and conditions of every employment relationship should be carefully outlined in an employment contract. We are often retained to draft employment contracts and workplace policies for employers. Having clearly drafted, enforceable contracts and workplace policies is critically important to the protection of your business. We are experienced in drafting legally enforceable agreements and clauses such at termination provisions, independent contractor agreements, bonus provisions, discipline policies, absence management policies and workplace violence and harassment policies.
Termination: Terminating employees is sometimes required. As an employer, your exposure to liability for wrongful dismissal or other claims is highest at this time. We are experienced in assisting employers navigate through this potential liability in matters such as drafting termination letters, responding to allegations of wrongful dismissal or bad faith, and defending against wrongful dismissal lawsuits that are sometimes brought by former employees.
Ministry of Labour Complaints: Not every employee complaint ends up in the courts. If you have a case coming up before the Ministry of Labour, you will still need experienced counsel to assist, advise and represent you.
Human Rights and Discrimination: Every employee has a right to work in a discrimination-free environment and every employer has a right to a vigorous defense. If you have received notice of a complaint before a Human Rights Tribunal or you have an employee who has complained of harassing and/or discriminatory behaviour, be sure to call us before your filing deadline expires or before responding to the employee. If you are looking for a more cost-effective solution, we can give expert counsel from the sidelines without needing to be there at the table with you. We can also assume carriage of your case at any point throughout the process.
Pensions and Benefits: Did you know that there are legal ramifications every time you modify your pension plan or your benefits program? If you are terminating an employee, for example, have you thought about how this will affect their long-term benefits? Have you thought about what kind of vulnerabilities you might be exposed to? We will work closely with you to eliminate any vulnerabilities and ensure that your benefits program and pension plan perform optimally for your employees – and for you.
Injunctions: Whether you are protecting your intellectual property or fending off a former employee who starts a competing business, sometimes you have to vigorously protect your business interests. We will file an injunction application on your behalf to send a clear message that some behaviour is simply unacceptable.
Human Resource Policies: Sure, investing in a solid prevention program takes time and money, but if you compare it to the costs of defending a lawsuit because you did not take the necessary precautions, it is one of the wisest investments any business can make. We will help you clarify your policies and procedures in a comprehensive, easy-to-read employee handbook to make sure you are thoroughly protected.
Workplace Safety & Insurance Board Claims: When one of your employees is injured on the job, it is important to have someone in your corner. Whether it is filling out the paperwork, guiding you through the WSIB process, filing an appeal, or appearing at the Workplace Insurance and Appeals Tribunal on your behalf, we will make sure that you are well represented.
Privacy Compliance: In an age when information is readily available, privacy is more important than ever – to your employees, your customers, your suppliers and everyone you have a business relationship with. We make sure you are fully compliant with all privacy laws so that you can maintain the trust and respect of the people who are the most important to the success of your business.
Employment Standards Act: The Employment Standards Act sets out key responsibilities and minimum statutory obligations that every employer in Ontario must comply with. We have an expert knowledge of these statutory requirements and provide legal guidance to employers to ensure that these requirements are followed.
Occupational Health and Safety: Keeping your employees safe goes far beyond just posting a set of rules where everyone can see them. As an employer, it is your responsibility to have a Workplace Violence and Harassment Policy. There are strict requirements and conditions that must be satisfied. This includes making sure your employees are properly trained, equipped, and informed. It includes having processes and procedures in place to deal with everything from handling hazardous materials to avoiding violence in the workplace. We will make sure that you know what the responsibilities of an Ontario employer are, and how to comply with them.
Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities: Accessibility in the workplace is more than a courtesy; it is a legal obligation. If your business is not 100 per cent clear on your responsibilities under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, we can provide you with the information that your business needs in order to ensure that your work environment is accessible for everyone. If someone files a complaint against you, we will stand up for you and make sure you are fully compliant so that it never happens again.
Pay Equity: Contrary to what you might think, pay equity is not equal pay for equal work. It is equal pay for work of equal value. Are jobs traditionally done by women valued the same as similar jobs traditionally done by men? We can lead you through a gender-neutral evaluation system and make the necessary adjustments to make sure you are fully compliant with pay equity laws.
Labour Law: Whether you are facing a union organizing or a certification drive, an unfair labour practice allegation, collective bargaining, or a strike, we offer an experienced legal team which will allow your business to take on the union with confidence. We also offer experienced litigation support in Labour Board proceedings and arbitration hearings.
Collective Bargaining: Renegotiating a Collective Bargaining Agreement is not just a necessary part of working in a unionized workplace; it is also a costly part. We are experienced negotiators and will represent you at the bargaining table. We can also offer your business expert legal advice during the negotiation process and provide strategic guidance about your rights and interests. We can also offer guidance in respect of strike planning and preparation.