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British Columbia Employer Advisor Keeping Employers Posted on Developments in Labour and Employment Law

Category Archives: Age

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“Control and Dependency Define the Essence of Employment”, SCC Rules

Focus is on substance, not form

Posted in Age, Discrimination, Human Rights, Independent Contractors, Litigation

The Supreme Court of Canada released a highly-anticipated decision for professional partnerships, employers and employees today in McCormick v Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP.   We commented previously on the facts of the case and the history of proceedings to the British Columbia Court of Appeal here.

In short, McCormick, a partner at a large law firm, claimed that the mandatory retirement provision in the partnership agreement was discriminatory and contravened the Human Rights Code.  The case was eventually heard by the British Columbia Court of Appeal, which concluded that McCormick could not be both a partner and an … Continue Reading

Age and Performance Management

Posted in Age, Human Rights, Termination

If you are going to lay off older workers while hiring younger ones in the same category, you better have a good explanation. That’s essentially what the BC Human Rights Tribunal said in Price and Top Line Roofing Ltd., 2013 BCHRT 306. The Complainant, Paul Price, was a journeyman working for the Respondent Top Line.  He was one of the two oldest journeymen employed at Top Line. Both were laid off in July, 2012.  A few months before this, however, Top Line had hired a journeyman in his 40s and two young journeymen apprentices.

Top Line said Price was … Continue Reading

Mandatory Retirement for Firefighters

Is it valid?

Posted in Age, Discrimination, Human Rights, Termination

The BC Human Rights Tribunal has decided to hear a complaint from an on-call firefighter in Chilliwack about his forced retirement at age 60 (news reports claim Mr. Shellard is now 63 years old).

The case is significant for at least two reasons. First, it is a challenge to mandatory retirement in a job that is generally recognized to have extreme physical demands.  Second, the BCHRT refused to be bound by findings of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal in similar cases.

The decision in Shellard v. The City of Chilliwack recognized the demands on firefighters, the research showing that firefighters … Continue Reading

Month in Review

Posted in Accommodation, Age, Benefits, Compensation, Pensions, Damages, Discipline, Discrimination, Employee Obligations, Employment Standards, Family Status, Human Capital, Human Rights, Immigration, Investigations, Just Cause, Labour Relations, Litigation, Murphy's Laws of HR, Privacy, Recruiting, Termination, Unions, US vs.Canadian Employment Law, Wage and Hours, Workers Compensation, Wrongful Dismissal

The bloggers of BC Employer Advisor issued our first Month in Review to summarize our most recent posts.

Visit the summary here.

 … Continue Reading

Mandatory Retirement for Law Partners

Posted in Age, Discrimination, Human Rights, Termination

A partner is a partner and cannot be an employee of the partnership.  That decision came today from the BC Court of Appeal in the Fasken Martineau case.

The decision is of great interest to law firms of course, and to other partnerships.  But it is also important for employers generally.  It helps to better understand who is and is not an employee entitled to human rights protections.

The case began when Mitch McCormick, a long time partner of Fasken Martineau in Vancouver, challenged the mandatory retirement provisions of his partnership agreement.  The firm asked the BC Human Rights Tribunal … Continue Reading