In a Flash: Common Law on Layoffs Found to be “Inapplicable and Irrelevant” by Ontario Court

June 9, 2021

From our partners at Mathews, Dinsdale & Clark LLP:

Traditionally at common law, employers have been found to lack the inherent right to place employees on temporary layoffs, with courts confirming that the right to layoff is one employers must bargain for, as an express or implied term of the employment contract. When faced with a global pandemic, however, employers across the country were left with no choice, thereby risking constructive dismissal claims by all affected staff.

On June 7, 2021, in Taylor v. Hanley Hospitality Inc., the Ontario Superior Court of Justice established that where temporary layoffs were implemented for reasons related to COVID-19, the common law doctrine (that a layoff equates to a constructive dismissal) has been displaced by the Infectious Disease Emergency Leave, Ontario Regulation 228/20 and the Employment Standards Act, 2000, SO 2000, c. 41.

To read the full article by the team at Mathews, Dinsdale & Clark LLP click here.

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