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Lecture 1

LAW 529 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Feudalism, Precedent, Personal Information Protection And Electronic Documents Act


Department
Law and Business
Course Code
LAW 529
Professor
Kristyn Scott
Lecture
1

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Chapter 1 & 2 – Law 529
Introduction
• Scene setting.• Providing review of the legal framework for the
entire course. • Historical background.• Sources of employment
law.• Difference between employment and labour law.• Provincial
vs. federal jurisdiction + Charter.• Court System and
administrative tribunals/agencies.
What is Employment and Labour Law?
• The law that governs the employment relationship between
individual employees and employers; and between unionized
employees, trade unions, and employers.• Employment Law: Non-
unionized employees (terms based on individual contract of
employment).
• Labour Law/Labour Relations/Industrial Relations: Unionized
employees (terms based on negotiated collective agreement).-
Labour relations law is in the collective bargaining agreement-
Employment Law relations in contained in contract of employment
Why do we need employment and labour law? The Evolution
• Feudalism: master and servant relationship (status) • Common
law of contracts: labour is a commodity; employment contract =
commercial contract• Labour is not a commodity:
– Imbalance of bargaining power.– Work as a central component
of employee’s lives.– Three legal regimes: common law, collective
bargaining and statutory law. – What is the appropriate balance
between the three?
Sources of LawsOur focus is Ontario• Canada is a federal state
with three levels of government:federal, provincial, and municipal.
• Ss. 91-92 of the Constitution: no specific reference to

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employment matters.• Toronto Electric Commissioners v. Snider:
employment law falls within provincial jurisdiction. The federal
government has authority over industries of national importance
(e.g. banks, airlines, etc.).• Although employment laws in all
provinces are similar in principle, they vary in detail.• What if an
Ontario-regulated business operates in other provinces?-legislation
flows from the idea that labour is not a commodity-Federal
government has power to deal with industries that fall under
federal legislation. 90% of employees in Canada fall within
provincial legislation-It doesnt matter where your business is based
from its where the employees are. For ex Ontario based business in
Saskatchewan follow saskatchewan laws.
Where do employment laws come from?• Statute Law – made by
legislatures.• Common Law – based on decisions of judges (and
evolves over time).• Collective Bargaining Law – collective
agreements negotiated by employers antrade unions.-Common
Law- eventually turn to precedents-Statute: contains main
component of law the regulations on the other hand are easier to
changeWhy do we have Human Rights Code? Because the Charter
applies only to government legislation. Human rights Code
encompasses individual breaches.
Statute LawActs and Regulations• Statutes– Also known as
“legislation” or “acts”.– Contain main requirements of law.– Must
be passed/amended by legislature.– Consider policy rationale and
evolving societal and technological norms.• Regulations– Contain
more detailed requirements.– Easily changed within government
(ex: the exact amount of minimum wage at a particular moment in
time).
Key Ontario Employment Statutes• Employment Standards
Act:Sets minimum terms of employment (e.g. vacation pay,
overtime pay, hours of work).• Labour Relations Act:Deals with
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