Howard Levitt: Extended COVID employer protections leaves laid-off workers in limbo

howard levitt extended covid employer protections leaves laid off workers in limbo

Sumary of Howard Levitt: Extended COVID employer protections leaves laid-off workers in limbo:

  • The decision held that, given that the Employment Standards Act states it does not interfere with Common Law (court developed) rights, employees who are laid off can claim constructive dismissal..
  • But on April 21, Justice Jane Ferguson of the same court, involving Candace Taylor and Hanley Hospitality, a Tim Horton dealer, came to the opposite conclusion..
  • It found that any employee laid off during this extended IDEL period as a result of COVID could not claim constructive dismissal in the courts from their employer..
  • Now I happen to know, from meetings with the Ministry of Labour at the time, at which I and some members of my firm and a few other lawyers were invited to, that the legislature did not intend IDEL to preclude constructive dismissal court actions..
  • But courts are supposed to rely on the wording of the legislation itself, regardless of what might be the actual legislative intention..
  • They therefore risk losing the settlement they presumed to obtain, their right to return to their job, dismissal damages if they are not recalled and will have to pay costs to the employer from the court action….

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