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WCB does not bar constructive dismissal claim

WCB's exclusive jurisdiction does not bar an employee from bringing a constructive dismissal claim that results from bullying or harassment in the workplace. Background In Deol v Dreyer Davison LLP, 2020 BCSC 771, the plaintiff alleged that she was subjected to sexually harassing behaviour in the workplace. As a result, ...
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/ Employment Litigation

Exacerbating a disability may be discriminatory though causing a disability is not

An employer's actions that exacerbate an employee's disability may be discriminatory, even though an employer's actions that cause a disability are not, according to BC's Human Rights Tribunal. In 2020 BCHRT 148, the complainant alleged that the employer failed to protect her from exposure to situations which eventually caused a ...
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/ Human Rights Code

Sexual harassment-based constructive dismissal claim not ousted by Human Rights Code

A claim that is based on facts that could amount to discrimination under BC's Human Rights Code may proceed to court so long as the cause of action is separately recognized at common law. In Deol v Dreyer Davison LLP, 2020 BCSC 771, the plaintiff claimed for constructive dismissal on ...
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Termination clause void for hypothetical future ESA violations

A termination clause may be void where it could theoretically breach the Employment Standards Act in the future - even if it is possible that no breach would have ever actually occurred - according to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. In Rutledge v. Canaan Construction Inc., 2020 ONSC 4246, ...
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/ Employment Litigation

Small Claims Court Accepting New Filings

The Provincial Court has announced that effective July 13, 2020, BC's Small Claims Court will be accepting new claims once again. This is the first opportunity for parties to initiate new claims at Small Claims Court since March 18, 2020, when the Provincial Court stopped accepting any non-urgent filings due ...
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/ Civil Procedure

BC court closures due to COVID-19

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, regular operation at all of the British Columbia courts are suspended. As of March 18, 2020, the following restrictions apply: The BC Supreme Court has announced today that regular operations are suspended effective immediately until further notice: As part of the Court's efforts to ...
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/ Civil Procedure

Employment Insurance benefits for those affected by COVID-19

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) has released new information regarding the availability of Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits for COVID-19 victims. EI sickness benefits are available to eligible claimants who are "unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine, to allow them time to restore their health and ...
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/ Other

Manager dismissed for cause for derogatory comments made privately about colleagues

A manager who privately sent an email at work that was highly derogatory towards his subordinate, as well as a human resources manager, was fired for just cause according to the BC Supreme Court. In Nagy v William L. Rutherford (B.C.) Limited, 2020 BCSC 324, the plaintiff's wrongful dismissal claim ...
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/ Employment Litigation

Reasonable notice required where contract contains no clear termination provision

A claimant's entitlement to reasonable notice of dismissal cannot be waived unless there is clear evidence that a different notice period is agreed upon. In Shehata v. Ashton College Ltd., 2020 BCPC 37, the defendant Ashton College failed to establish that the plaintiff's contract limited him to less than reasonable ...
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/ Employment Litigation

Employee resigned by failing to return to work following suspension

The plaintiff's wrongful dismissal claim was dismissed in Coutlee v Apex Granite & Tile Inc., 2020 BCSC 315 on the basis that the employee had voluntarily resigned - and had not been terminated - from his employment. The claim for wrongful dismissal failed as the Court found that there had ...
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/ Employment Litigation
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