Catherine Deslauriers  

Senior Associate

Executive Summary

Catherine Deslauriers is an associate practicing in the labour and employment group, with special interest in construction, occupational health and safety (prevention, financing and/or compensation of employment injuries) and the management of cases involving medical concepts, especially cases involving disability or absenteeism. Catherine also has a strong experience in penal law.

Catherine is often called upon to intervene in investigations being conducted by different public bodies, such as the CNESST, the CCQ and autonomous auditing units like UPAC-CCQ. In particular, she has assisted employers in carrying out investigations following certain serious or fatal workplace accidents. She has also intervened on matters of subjection of construction projects to the R-20 Act. She has been involved in the implementation of work procedures in companies to ensure compliance with occupational health and safety legislation, as well as with auditing and improving internal mechanisms to control risks and dangers present in the workplace environment.

On numerous occasions, Catherine has managed and pleaded cases before the Administrative Labour Tribunal's (Occupational Health and Safety and Labour Relations divisions), as well as before grievance arbitrators, the Court of Quebec (Criminal and Penal Division and Civil Division) and the Superior Court.

Catherine not only has litigation experience, but she is also ready and willing to:

  • accompany employers in their daily handling of workplace injury or occupational disease cases accepted by the CNESST;
  • develop strategies to manage employee absenteeism, including both disciplinary and administrative aspects, as well as employee disability cases;
  • develop strategies to improve the working environment, through policies, forms and training, and by implementing concrete measures;
  • find solutions to avoid costly disputes and foster agreement between contending parties.

In short, through her past experience in the CNESST's Occupational Health and Safety Branch, as well her experience in the legal department of an employers' association in the construction industry, Catherine has developed a special expertise that has proven to be a real asset in many ways.

Representative Work

  • ​Catherine Deslauriers, in the area of occupational health and safety, has represented and negotiated on behalf of various clients in cases of industrial accidents and occupational diseases, financing or prevention and inspection before the Tribunal administratif du travail.
  • She has defended companies before the Criminal and Penal Chamber of the Court of Québec that have been accused under occupational health and safety statutes and regulations or the Act respecting labour relations, vocational training and workforce management in the construction industry and its regulations.
  • She represented a company against a public body that was refusing to perform its legal obligations.
  • She has participated in various negotiations in the construction industry to settle jurisdictional conflicts between different trades.
  • She has pleaded subjection issues in the construction industry affecting a key area of the energy sector.
  • Catherine advises and makes representations on behalf of different employers before grievance arbitrators.
  • She has successfully pleaded an application for judicial review against two decisions of an administrative tribunal which had wrongfully awarded benefits.

Publications & Presentations

  • Speaker, " 'Non' c'est 'non' – Outils pratiques pour contrôler le harcèlement au travail," Québec, January 2018.
  • Author, "Maîtrise d'œuvre : Inapplicable aux entreprises de compétence fédérale," Travail et santé magazine, December 2017. 
  • Speaker, "Carrying Out Construction Work in Quebec – An introduction,"  Toronto, November 2017.
  • Author, "Accidents Graves : Savoir les gérer," Travail et santé magazine, September 2017. 
  • Author, "Transfert de coûts: Possible suite à un congédiement?," Travail et santé magazine, June 2017. 
  • Speaker, "Trucs et astuces pour une filature utile," May 2017.
  • Speaker, "L'ABC de la gestion de l'absentéisme," April and May 2017.
  • Speaker, "Effective Crisis Management : How to Manage Issues Relating to the Workplace," March 2017.
  • Speaker, "La gestion des medias sociaux, un nouveau défi dans les milieu de travail," February 2017.
  • Speaker, "L'importance de gérer les dossiers d'accidents du travail et de maladies professionnelles et les méthodes pour y parvenir," December 2016.
  • Speaker, "Regulation concerning safe management of asbestos," November 2016.
  • Speaker, "Workplace Accident or Crime Scene? How to Prevent and Manage Serious or Deadly Workplace Accidents," Annual Labour and Employment Law Conference,Toronto, November 2016.
  • Speaker, "Accidents sévères : comment les prévenir et les gérer, et leurs incidences en matière criminelle," Annual Labour and Employment Law Conference, Montréal, October 2016.
  • Speaker, "Labour Law Variances in Quebec," September 2016.
  • ​Speaker, "L'inapplicabilité du concept de maître d'œuvre aux entreprises de juridiction fédérale," Construction Law Symposium, Montréal, April 2016.
  • Speaker, "Les obligations du maître-d'oeuvre sur un chantier de construction et survol de la Loi R-20," July 2016.
  • Collaborator, "Le congédiement en droit québécois en matière de contrat individuel de travail," 3rd ed. Cowansville, Québec: Éditions Yvon Blais, (loose-leaf, updated three times a year), 1991.