CHAPTER 20 – The Employment Relationship
Employment Law: Both Federal and Provincial have employment law:
Federal - regulate industries such as banking, airline, broadcasting, railway and shipping
Provincial - affect all other employees – eg: newspaper company not federally regulate
Independent Contractor: person in working relationship that doesn’t meet criteria of
(eg: doctors, lawyers)
ADVANTAGES: tax savings, flexibility, and independence in arranging a work schedule.
Employees vs. Independent Contractor:
Courts have come up with a variety of tests to distinguish between the two:
1. The Degree of control exercised over the individual by the employer: more supervision
employer has, the more likely the relationship is employment
2. The Ownership of tools, chance of profit, and the risk of loss from performance of the
requested service: Sharing profits and losses and the ownership of tools are indicative of
an independent contractor.
3. The Degree of Integration: Nature of work being performed is considered in the relation
to business itself.
– Is it “integral” or “adjunct” – more work integrated into company’s activities, more likely
you are an employee.
Implications of Employee Relationship:
Employees have certain rights and benefits, such as paid holidays and paid overtime.
Employers have certain obligations like the deduction of income taxes and employment
- assuming someone thinks they’re an independent contractor, but are not, can have bad
outcome (smart to establish the employment relationship, before people begin to give their
Risks In Hiring
Business Perspective – Hiring someone who is best suited for the job.
Legal Perspective – Hiring can reduce the risks associated with employment relationship.
1. Vicarious Liability – employers liable for torts of employee committed in ordinary of
The justifications for hold employers guilty:
• Employers have ability to control employees
• Employers benefit from the work of the employees • Employers are usually in a better position that employees to pay for damages
• Employers have an incentive to try and prevent torts from occurring
2. Negligent Hiring – employer has duty to use skill & care in hiring employees. If employee
injures another employee, there is blame on the employer for having hired that person.
The Hiring Process:
• Develop job descriptions
• Advertise the positions
• Have candidates complete an application
• Short list candidates
• Check background
• Interview selected Candidate
Human Rights Requirements - provide equal access to employment opportunities
Adverse Effects Discrimination – Occurs as a result of a rule that appears neutral but in its
effect is discriminatory (eg:
Systemic Discrimination - results from the combined efforts of many rules, practices and
policies (eg: if a workforce is dominated by male workers)
Defenses to Discrimination
1. Bona fide Occupational Requirement (BFOR) - excuses discrimination in good faith
and for a legitimate reason (ie. you are hiring truck drivers and not going to hire
someone who is blind)
2. Duty to Accommodate – the duty of employer to modify work rules, practices, and
requirements to meet the needs of individuals who would otherwise be subjected to
- designed to improve status of cert