Employment Law Conference 2019

Course Date: May 2, 2019

Full Course Materials
Total: 11h 40min
Total Ethics: 2h 5min

Day 1: Thursday, May 2, 2019

Welcome and Introduction

Human Rights Law Round Up

  • recent human rights cases from the employment sphere
  • changes to the Human Rights Code you need to know about
  • powers of the Human Rights Commission and what you can expect
  • considerations for employment law practitioners going forward

    Eleni Kassaris  Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, Vancouver
    Laura Track Lawyer and Director of Education - Human Rights Clinic, Community Legal Assistance Society, Vancouver


What is New in Releases and Convenants Not to Sue? Recent Developments and Legal and Practical Considerations

  • the formation and enforceability of releases and covenants not to sue, with particular emphasis placed on what elements are included in a 'standard' release and covenant not to sue
  • how the law has developed and a survey of recent developments in the case law
  • the use and enforceability of non-disparagement clauses
  • what constitutes good consideration
  • the impact of legal advice and unconscionability on enforceability
  • the direction in which the law regarding releases and covenants not to sue may be moving

Matthew Allard Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, Vancouver
James D. Kondopulos Roper Greyell LLP - Employment and Labour Lawyers, Vancouver

Discriminatory Action Complaints Under The Workers Compensation Act: The Power of the Taint Principle and Defences That Work

  • brief review of the history of the discriminatory action provisions in the WCA
  • review of the WorkSafeBC process
  • legal framework of a discriminatory action complaint
  • available remedies
  • appeals to WCAT and judicial reviewsstandards of review
  • applications for stays of remedy decisions
  • significant cases
  • tips for employers to avoid discriminatory action complaints and best defences

    Valerie Dixon City of Vancouver, Vancouver
    Dianne Rideout Harris & Company LLP, Vancouver

Lunch (provided) with Featured Speakers:

Hitting the Sweet Spot Accessibility, Quality, Profitability and Joy in Employment Law Practice

  • employment lawyers can innovate to increase access to justice, quality of work, profit and enjoy their work more
  • engaging group discussion on opportunities to innovate in the following areas:
    • how we charge for our work
    • what services we offer
    • who does the work (division of labour)
    • does (firm) size matter?

Sara Forte  Forte Law Corporation, Surrey
Noel Semple, JD, PhD Assistant Professor, Windsor Law, University of Windsor, Windsor, ON

Consideration Rosas v. Toca, BCCA and Beyond

  • review of the requirement for consideration in employment contracts
  • discussion of decision and reasoning in Rosas v. Toca decision, and cases referred to in decision
  • review of cases which have and will have considered Rosas v. Toca
  • discussion of application of law to employment contracts such as implementation and enforcement of restrictive covenants and termination clauses

    Michael A. Watt
    Alexander Holburn Beaudin + Lang LLP, Vancouver


Employment Law Considerations When Advising on Asset and Share Purchase Transactions

  • brief overviewwhat are the differences between an asset purchase and a share purchase transaction
  • due diligence processchecklist: what to look for and what to ask for
  • drafting the purchase agreementaccounting for and carving out employment-related liabilities
  • drafting notices to employees and unions about the transaction
  • drafting and issuing new employment agreements in an asset purchase deal
  • post-closing considerations

    Natalie Cuthill
    McMillan LLP, Vancouver

    Hilary D. Henley McMillan LLP, Vancouver

MeToo and the Black Box of Workplace Investigations: Practical Considerations for Before, During, and After

  • snapshot of #metoo in Canadian workplaces
  • role of counsel for individuals
    • advice for individuals who are making or responding to complaints
    • possible consequences of investigations for participants
    • forum considerations in the aftermath of an investigation (WorkSafe, Court, Human Rights)
    • use of releases and confidentiality clauses to resolve disputes
  • role of employer counsel
    • proportionality in responding to complaints
    • selecting and retaining an investigator
    • communication about the investigation
    • interim measures in the workplace
    • remedial and corrective measures
  • role of independent investigator
    • understanding the role and purpose
    • tips for working with an investigator
    • the impact of bias and trauma in investigations
    • addressing the evolving scope of an investigation

Gwendoline Allison — Foy Allison Law, West Vancouver
Sandra F. Guarascio — Roper Greyall LLP, Vancouver
Donovan G. Plomp — McCartchy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Reception hosted by Cooperwilliams Law at Rogue Kitchen and Wetbar Convention Centre (200 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC)

Hosted by:

Day 2: Friday, May 3, 2019


Matthew Cooperwilliams Cooperwilliams Law, Vancouver OR
Simon Kent Kent Employment Law, Vancouver

A Summary of Recent Employment Law Trends Developing in Ontario and How Those Trends Are Being Applied in British Columbia

  • review of trends in Ontario regarding issues of mitigation, interpretation of contractual termination provisions and post-termination conduct giving rise to awards of aggravated and punitive damages.
  • Review of key Ontario Cases
    • review of key Ontario Cases
    • Brake v. PJ-M2R Restaurant Inc., 2017 ONCA 402
    • Wood v. Fred Deeley Imports Ltd., 2017 ONCA 158
    • Galea v. Wal-Mart Canada Corp., 2017 ONSC 245
  • trends from these cases that could have significant impact on employment law practitioners in BC

    Steven Barker
    Tevlin Gleadle Curtis Employment Law Strategies, Vancouver

    Christopher Drinovz  Kane Shannon Weiler LLP, Abbotsford
    Catherine Milne Turnpenney Milne LLP, Vancouver and Toronto


Employment Standards Update

  • employment standards update
    • what has happened with employment standards in the past 12 months
      • organizational developments at the Employment Standards Branch
      • BCLI final report and recommendations
      • legislation/regulation developments related to employment standards
      • jurisprudential updateemployment standards related cases from BC and across Canada
  • director's "tips" for employment law counsel and HR professionalswho deal with the ESA
  • temporary foreign worker update
    • overview of the new Temporary Foreign Worker Protection Act
    • organizational updatetemporary foreign worker program

William (Bill) C. Boyte, LLB, LLM Executive Director, Ministry of Labour – Employment Standards Branch, Victoria

Workers' Compensation for Dummies Employment Lawyers

  • what you need to know about the Workers Compensation Act and WorkSafeBC
  • claims basicsthe what, when and how of coverage and the life of a claim
  • OH&S essentials in any workplace
  • common WCA issues impacting on the employment relationship
  • key policies and procedural tips

    Peter Eastwood HHBG Employment Lawyers, Vancouver

Networking Lunch (provided)

The Right to Disconnect: The Darker Side of Flexible Working Arrangements

  • status of revisions to Canada Labour Code re: "Right to Disconnect"
  • comparison with "Right to Disconnect" legislation enacted or proposed in other jurisdictions
  • employer policies limiting the use of work-related technology outside of working hours
  • employee use of their own devices as opposed to company devices (i.e., whose property it is, how much say does the employer have about how these devices are being used, privacy considerations)
  • insidious aspects of providing employees with flexible working arrangements, claims for "stress," family status discrimination/accommodation, and bullying and harassment
  • impacts on the health of the employee and that of his or her immediate family members when responding to flexible working arrangements and work-from-home technologies (including receiving and responding to work-related emails, phone calls or messages outside working hours)
  • relevant case law and sample workplace policies re: disconnecting (or not being permitted to)

    Jessica Fairbairn Harris & Company LLP, Vancouver

    David Woolias Harris & Company LLP, Vancouver


Fiduciary Duty Update

  • what does it mean to be a 'fiduciary'?
  • who is a fiduciarywith focus on directors, employees and the "web of fiduciaries"
  • what are the duties of departing and departed fiduciaries, including with respect to both employees and customers/clients
  • how does the employee "duty of fidelity" differ from fiduciary duty?
  • remedies for breach of fiduciary duty

    Colin J. Edstrom Pushor Mitchell LLP, Kelowna

    Nicole C.M. Toye Harris & Company LLP, Vancouver

Case Law/Cause Update: That Old Chestnut

  • key cases
  • analysis and trends
  • effects on practice

    Mark Bout Mathews, Dinsdale & Clark LLP, Vancouver

    Cameron R. Wardell  Mathews, Dinsdale & Clark LLP, Vancouver

Closing Remarks

Matthew Cooperwilliams Cooperwilliams Law, Vancouver
Simon Kent  Kent Employment Law, Vancouver