Summary

Whether you need proactive advice on the legal impacts of proposed workplace changes or you need effective litigators to handle labour/employment disputes, BLG’s Labour and Employment Group will work with you to drive results.

Our Labour and Employment Group offers the right advice as it applies to:

  • Human resources, including drafting and litigating employment contracts, restrictive covenants, compensation, severance and stock option agreements, human rights/accommodation, attendance management, employment policy manuals, health and safety standards, health and welfare plans, pension and benefits and business immigration
  • Conducting training and investigations, including in the areas of harassment, human rights or fraud allegations
  • Labour relations advice and litigation services, including defending unionization claims, collective bargaining representation, unfair labour practice and bad-faith bargaining complaints, strikes, lockouts and picketing injunctions, successorships, common employer applications, grievances and arbitration
  • Litigating cases at all levels of Court in the areas of wrongful dismissal, constructive dismissal, just cause dismissal and other civil litigation, as well as litigating before administrative tribunals such as human rights tribunals, labour relations boards, employment standards adjudicators, workers compensation boards, pay equity tribunals and occupational health and safety adjudicators
  • Advising on and litigating cases resulting from mergers, acquisitions, outsourcing transactions, relocations and closures

To give you the full breadth of BLG’s expertise, members of the Labour and Employment Group work closely with our lawyers in other specialized areas, including lawyers in the fraud group, the mergers and acquisitions group and the bankruptcy and insolvency group. No matter what industry you work in, we can quickly assemble a team to handle your labour and employment needs.

Because we have Labour and Employment specialists in all of BLG’s offices, we are well-positioned to provide you with timely, effective strategies to deal with national labour and employment issues.  Whether you are concerned with issues on a local level or Canada-wide, BLG’s Labour and Employment Group can partner with you to design a solution that accomplishes your business needs.

Publications

Publications


Recent Client Bulletins​

Rankings & Recognitions

The Labour and Employment Group or its members are recognized in:

  • Shortlisted for the Employment Team of the Year award at the 2015 Chambers Canada Awards.
  • The 2016 edition of Legal 500 Canada.
  • The 2016 edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada®.
  • The 2016 edition of Chambers Canada — Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business.
  • The 2016 edition of Chambers Global — The World's Leading Lawyers for Business.
  • The 2016 edition of the Lexpert®/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada.
  • The 2015 edition of the Who's Who Legal — The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers.
  • The 2015 edition of Who's Who Legal — Canada.
  • The 2015 edition of the Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory.
  • Matt Certosimo and Margot Blight are both Certified Specialists in Labour Law (Law Society of Upper Canada).

Representative Work

  • Communications v. IKO Industries, 2012 Ontario Superior Court of Justice (Divisional Court) – The Court looked at the issue of whether an employer was entitled to count days of paid bereavement leave as part of the minimum 10 days emergency leave granted by section 50 of the Employment Standards Act. The Court found in favour of the Firm’s client, IKO Industries Inc. despite the opposing party’s argument that such a finding would result in different outcomes for different employees, depending upon when emergency leave is taken and whether a bereavement day is needed after the use of all emergency days. The Court found that the possibility of different outcomes is not unreasonable, finding the decision logical considered, and intelligible.
  • Acting for an employer regarding an Employment Standards Act issue regarding the use of bereavement entitlement v. emergency days.
  • Zholudev v. EMC Corp. of Canada, 2012 Ontario Human Rights Tribunal – An employee alleged discrimination in employment on the basis of age. The human rights complaint alleged that the employee was discriminated against in seven “events” where he was not promoted to a job nor assigned to an employment opportunity while employed with EMC. Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (“The Firm”) obtained dismissal of the employee’s claim. The Adjudicator concluded that the employee has no reasonable prospect of establishing that his age was a factor and/or that he was reprised against for enforcing his rights under the Human Rights Code. The Adjudicator found that there was no link between the employee’s age and the specific seven events in question.
  • Acted for an employer with respect to a human rights complaint alleging age discrimination.
  • Mocle v. Oracle Corporation of Canada Inc., 2010 Ontario Superior Court of Justice –The Firm represented Oracle in a constructive dismissal action. The plaintiff claimed that following Oracle’s acquisition of his former employer, it was an implied term of his employment contract to receive written terms of his variable compensation. When those terms failed to come in what he believed to be a timely manner, he resigned and claimed constructive dismissal. Madam Justice Hoy, relying on the entire agreement clause in the plaintiff’s employment offer, found that written terms of variable compensation were not an implied term of the plaintiff’s employment.
  • Acted for a major technology company in an Ontario Superior Court constructive dismissal action.
  • Advise large national employers on restructuring and mass lay-offs.
  • Lakeridge Health Corporation v. Ontario Public Service Employees Union, 2012 Ontario Labour Arbitration – The Firm was successful in defending Lakeridge Health Corporation’s interests in arbitration, where an employee was alleging unjust termination. The employee was terminated for falsifying overtime claims and insubordinate behaviour. Based on the evidence and arguments presented by the Firm, the Arbitrator found in favour of the Firm’s client. The Arbitrator found that the employee did indeed claim overtime hours, engage in inappropriate conduct on several occasions and that reinstatement would not be just and reasonable in the circumstances. The Arbitrator upheld the termination and dismissed the grievance.
  • Successfully defended a major health entity in an arbitration involving a termination grievance. 
  • Zehrs Markets/Real Canadian Superstore v. United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Local 1977 (8494 Grievance), 2010 Ontario Labour Arbitration – In this arbitration, the Firm represented Zehrs Markets and defended the employee discharge contested before the Arbitrator. The employer had discharged the grievor after investigating the complaint of a co-worker that the grievor had sexually harassed another employee. The grievor employee had eight years of seniority and a clean discipline record. The Arbitrator upheld the employee discharge in favour of the employer.
  • Represented a major retailer in an arbitration regarding a termination based on a claim of sexual harassment.
  • Acted for a national employer in preparing defined benefit pension plans and defined contribution pension plans.
  • Advised a plan administrator regarding the design and implementation of a governance structure, including consolidation of the administration of several pension plans and delegation to affiliates.
  • Acted for an employer in the consolidation of the investment of the pension funds of different pension plans.
  • Advised large entertainment companies on immigration implications of Canadian productions and assisted in obtaining necessary work permits.
  • Acted as Canadian immigration advisor for large financial institutions seeking to employ highly-specialized workers from around the world.
  • Advised multinational consumer goods clients on migration strategies to assist with employee transfers and secondments from other regions of the world.