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Advice on Hiring, Discipline and Termination Matters for Employers and Employees

Whether hiring, disciplining or terminating an employee, it is important to be aware of what both statutes and the common law have set out. In Canada employment is based around the employment contract and as such the relationship between employee and employer is, at its heart, contractual. As such, hiring, disciplining, and termination must take into account any clauses or terms in the written employment agreement, if such an employment agreement exists in the first place. For example, when hiring an employee it is important to be knowledgeable of other commitments an employee may have or whether their acceptance of the employment contract could amount to an inducement to breach a previously existing contract of employment.

Furthermore, statutory provisions in the Employment Standards Act and the Human Rights Code inform the law of employment with further safeguards and regulations. For example, an employee may be required to accept terms that are not in compliance with such statutes and are, as such, void. However, an employee may be deprived of overtime pay, vacation pay, vacation time or may be discriminated against and think that it is perfectly legal when it is not.