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The articles listed below are intended to provide readers with general information. They should not be regarded or relied upon as legal advice or opinion.

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Highlights of Budget 2017 from a Labour and Employment Perspective

March 24, 2017

The federal budget tabled in the House of Commons on March 22, 2017, contains a number of measures that will be of particular interest to employers, especially those in federally-regulated sectors. Here is a summary of the budget highlights from a labour and employment perspective:   Changes to the Employment Insurance Act Expanded EI caregiver benefit – the government proposes to create a new EI caregiving benefit of up to 15 weeks. The new benefit will cover a broader range of situations than are currently covered, including circumstances where individuals are providing care to an adult family member who requires…

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Protecting your right to impose temporary layoffs

March 23, 2017

When it comes to downsizing, restructuring, or otherwise cost-cutting, employers may consider temporary or permanent layoffs. While temporary layoffs can be an effective means of cost-saving, they can also be risky if employers have not protected their right to temporarily lay off employees in their employment contracts. The Ontario Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) allows employers to temporarily lay off employees, so long as the layoff lasts for no more than 13 weeks in any consecutive 20-week period. However, if a layoff extends for more than 13 weeks in any consecutive 20-week period, but lasts less than 35 weeks in…

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March 21, 2017 – Minister Releases Recreational Drone Regulations

March 21, 2017

DECISIONS Appeal – Thorne v. Hudson Estate, 2017 ONCA 208 Negligent misrepresentation claim against engine manufacturer following plane crash due to engine failure – Plane was travelling from Canada and crashed in USA – Appeal from decision dismissing manufacturer’s motion that US law applied – Law applicable to torts – No overriding error from motion judge – Dismissed Passenger claim – Racine c. Westjet, 2017 QCCQ 1184 Passengers refused boarding because they did not have valid passports at least 60 minutes before departure – Claimed cost of plane tickets as well as missed cruise and return flight – Passengers’ responsibility…

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March 14, 2017 – Canada Jetlines One Step Closer To Launch With Jet Metal Combination

March 14, 2017

DECISIONS Policy Grievance – Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. v AOA-Canada, 2017 CanLII 10836 Flight officers required to prove eligibility to live and work in home base country – Union argued rule is inconsistent with collective agreement, unreasonable and inconsistently applied – Eligibility requirement found to be a valid unilateral rule Duty of Fair Representation complaint – Wayne N. Campbell v District 362 Unifor Local 2002, 2017 CanLII 10539 Applicant failed to file submissions on jurisdiction issue – Dismissed on basis of Board having no jurisdiction Application for Certification – International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers/Association Internationale des Machinistes et…

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Ontario Court of Appeal confirms when benefit entitlement claim will be arbitrable

In its recent decision (February 27, 2017) in Barber v. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company (Manulife Financial), the Ontario Court of Appeal upheld the dismissal of an employee’s claim for long-term disability benefits (LTD), finding that the claim fell within the exclusive jurisdiction of a labour arbitrator. Adrian Barber was employed as a police constable in the town of Port Hope. The collective agreement between the Port Hope Police Services Board and the Port Hope Police Association, which governed Barber’s employment, required the Board to offer disability insurance coverage to the Association’s members. When Barber became disabled from her employment…

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Ambiguities in employment contracts continue to trip-up employers – Ontario Court of Appeal refuses to enforce termination clause and awards common law reasonable notice

March 10, 2017

A recent decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal drives home the importance of clear and unambiguous language in employment agreements. In Wood v. Fred Deeley Imports Ltd. (February, 2017), the Ontario Court of Appeal held that a termination clause in an employment contract was unenforceable because it failed to meet the minimum requirements under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “ESA”). The Court came to this conclusion despite the employer having paid the employee more than would be required under the ESA at termination. The plaintiff was awarded damages based on common law reasonable notice equivalent to nine months’…

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March 7, 2017 – AA Pilots Grieve Fatigue Policies

March 7, 2017

DECISIONS Order – Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. v. Dieleman, 2017 CarswellNat 366 Rights to trademark and tradename – Domain name found “confusingly similar” – Registrant had no legitimate interest in domain name – Registration of domain name found to be in bad faith – Order to transfer domain name to complainant Application – Boulard v. Maratech Aviation Fuels (Sudbury) Ltd., 2017 HRTO 250 Applicant did not confirm intentions – Dismissed as abandoned Scheduling Order – The Commissioner of Competition v. Vancouver Airport Authority, 2017 CACT 1 Amending schedule for hearing of certain motions Scheduling Order – The Commissioner of Competition…

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February 28, 2017 – EU Pilot Fatigue Rules Not Working

February 28, 2017

DECISIONS Duty of Fair Representation – Campbell, [2017] O.L.R.D. No. 392 Porter Airlines employee – Complaint of duty of fair representation against Unifor – Board without jurisdiction to deal with federally regulated matters – Request for submissions from applicant Appeal – Northern Thunderbird Air Inc. v. British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal), 2017 BCCA 60 Appeal of order dismissing Employer’s petition for judicial review of WCAT decision – Decision not unreasonable – Dismissed Application for Production – Cohen and others v. Northern Thunderbird Air Inc., 2017 BCSC 315 Plaintiffs were passengers on plane that crashed – Request for production of data…

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February 22, 2017 – Pilot loses security clearance over homicidal messages

February 22, 2017

DECISIONS Judicial Review – Revocation of security clearance – Varadi v. Canada (Attorney General), 2017 FC 155 RCMP report of life-threatening messages – Decision reasonable – No application of the doctrine of legitimate expectation – Process procedurally fair – No obligation to consider less intrusive measures – Dismissed   CIRB DECISIONS Successor Employer – Jazz Technical Services (JTS), a Division of Jazz Aviation LP – Order No.: 11111-U Partial Sale of Business – Maintenance employees   CANADIAN TRANSPORTATION AGENCY DECISIONS Application – Central Helicopters Inc. – Decision No. 25-A-2017 Suspension of Licence No. 030056 Application – Omni Air International, LLC…

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February 14, 2017 – Pregnant employee’s lay-off – unjust or discriminatory?

February 14, 2017

DECISIONS Passenger Claim – Lost baggage – Partner airlines – Garroussi c. Delta Airlines CompanyGarroussi v. Delta Airlines Company, 2016 QCCQ 17094 Ticket sold by Delta – Portion of trip fulfilled by partner airlines – Delay and loss of baggage – Reserved seat unavailable – Contracting airline responsibility – Liability limited by Montreal Convention – Awarded $2,300 for delay and loss of baggage and $1,000 for loss of reserved seat Human rights – Interim decision – Boulard v. Maratech Aviation Fuels (Sudbury) Ltd., 2017 HRTO 171 Respondent in receivership – HRTO stayed application – Applicant to advise Tribunal within 14 days if…

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February 7, 2017 – Class Actions Certified Against Air Canada

February 7, 2017

DECISIONS Class Action Certification – Fuel surcharge – Choquette c. Air Canada, 2017 QCCS 234 Claim that fuel surcharge disproportionate compared to actual fuel cost – Defendant disputed jurisdiction of Court – Court found it has jurisdiction – Claim respects all four criteria of class action – Class action certified   CANADIAN TRANSPORTATION AGENCY DECISIONS Application – ACM Air Charter Luftfahrtgesellschaft mbH – Order No. 2017-A-11 Exemptions from the application of paragraphs 33.1(b) and 73(2)(c) and section 33.2 of the Air Transportation Regulations, SOR/88-58, as amended Application – Delta Air Lines, Inc. carrying on business as Delta Air Lines, as…

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January 31, 2017 – Pilot and AME Jointly Liable

January 31, 2017

DECISIONS Appeal – Freedom of expression – Cooperstock c. United Airlines Inc., 2017 QCCA 44 Appellant seeking provisional stay of injunction under appeal – Freedom of expression not infringed – Dismissed with costs Decision under appeal: United Airlines inc. c. Cooperstock, 2016 QCCS 4645 Judgement – Liability – British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Board) v. Flanagan Enterprises (Nevada) Inc., 2017 BCSC 99 Case arising from plane crash due to engine failure – US and Canadian jurisdictions – Regulatory framework – Whether Transport Canada owes duty of care to plaintiff – Responsibility for plane maintenance program – Maintenance inspector found liable –…

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January 24, 2017 – Westjet Flight Attendant Union Drive May be Suspended

January 24, 2017

DECISIONS Adjournment Application – Claim due to passenger injury – Hayer v. Qatar Airways, 2016 BCSC 2477 Defendants seeking trial adjournment – Witness unavailable for trial – Injuries of passenger not properly settled for trial – Dismissed, trial to proceed as scheduled Application – Independent medical examination – Yu et al v 171817 Canada Inc., 2016 NWTSC 73 Defendant seeking IME in British Columbia – Plaintiff wants IME in California or by videoconference – Allowed, Plaintiff to attend IME in Vancouver in conjunction with examination for discovery Human Rights – Dismissal – McKenna v. Capitol Taxi – Ottawa, 2017 HRTO…

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January 17, 2017 – Fitness to Fly

January 17, 2017

DECISIONS Passenger Claim – Unfit to fly – Viens c. Sunwing, 2016 QCCQ 15820 $15,000 claim due to refusal to allow passenger to fly without medical certificate – Passenger obtained certificate but flight had departed – Decision to prohibit passenger to fly was made using all reasonable tools and with safety of all passengers in mind – Dismissed Discipline and termination – Unjust dismissal – Molina et Grand Falls Aviation Service Ltd., Re, 2016 CarswellNat 7018 Employee was dismissed – Employee brought unjust dismissal complaint under Canada Labour Code – Employee worked for period of six months in 2013 and…

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Preventing impaired flying: Where do we go from here?

January 12, 2017

By Larissa Volinets Schieven and Steven P. Williams The recent arrest of an intoxicated Sunwing Airlines pilot, who made it as far as the cockpit before passing out, has garnered significant attention, and left many wondering how commercial air carriers can best ensure impaired pilots don’t make it to take-off. Last week, Federal Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, sent a letter to commercial air carriers expressing his concern over the incident, and reminding carriers of their “obligation to ensure that flight crew members are fit to fly” and their “responsibility to have procedures in place to identify and manage hazards…

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