Labour & Employment Law Blog

Ontario to end paid sick day program on March 31, 2023

Ontario to end paid sick day program on March 31, 2023

The Ontario government has released its 2023 budget. The budget has confirmed that Ontario will end its temporary paid sick day program on March 31, 2023, under the paid Infection Disease Emergency Leave program or “IDEL.”

To remind our readers, the IDEL program provided up to three paid sick days to workers for COVID-19 related absences from work such as isolation, caring for sick relatives, testing or vaccination, etc. It was initially set up in 2021 where it amended the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”) to ensure that employers provided their workers with up to three days’ pay if they were away from work due to the above-noted reasons.

Eligible employers should apply to be reimbursed for these payments made to workers with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board if they applied within 120 days of the date the employer paid the employee, or by July 29, 2023, whichever is earlier. IDEL was also extended several times by regulation. It was last extended in July 2022 with a set expiration date of March 31, 2023.

What about unpaid IDEL leave?

Unpaid IDEL is still available to workers. For instance, individuals are still being told by their doctors to ensure that they self-isolate for 5 days if they are sick with COVID-19. Employees have the right to take unpaid leave for reasons of COVID-19. Employers may make reasonable inquires with the employee to determine what the circumstances are to verify with the employee that they are in fact taking unpaid IDEL leave. However, to be clear, there is no set time or number of days that an employee may take IDEL and IDEL is only available with respect to COVID-19 and no other infectious diseases. Also to remind, individuals are still entitled to protection and accommodation under the Ontario Human Rights Code, 1990, and any inquiry as to the employee’s disability must not be unduly intrusive in terms of the information that is being sought by the employer.

The above article is for general information purposes only, does not constitute legal advice or create a solicitor-client relationship. Because each case is unique and factually driven, if you have concerns with regard to the foregoing issues, please make an appointment with one of our lawyers or a qualified legal practitioner elsewhere. We represent clients in the Greater Toronto Area including Toronto, North York, Markham, Vaughan, Thornhill, Newmarket, Aurora, Brampton, Mississauga, Barrie, Ajax, Whitby, Pickering and Oshawa.

Legal Receptionist

Zeilikman Law is an employment law firm located in Vaughan, Ontario. We are looking to hire a legal receptionist to join our firm. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience working as a receptionist at another law firm.

Location: Vaughan, Ontario.

Start Date: Immediately.

Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm. Full time. In-person only. This is not a remote work position.

Wages: 35,000 to 40,000 per year.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Manage our firm’s multi-line telephone system to receive incoming calls.  Screen incoming telephone call inquiries to determine the nature of the telephone call and provide standard information related to our legal services.  Take and deliver messages and route incoming telephone calls to the appropriate staff person.
  • Answer general inquiries coming from the firm’s social media and website email.
  • Welcome in-person visitors upon arrival.  Direct visitors to the appropriate staff person and / or office or boardroom.
  • Organize in-person visitor schedule to prevent overlap and multiple bookings.
  • Receive, sort, and distribute daily mail and deliveries.
  • Arrange for couriers.
  • Keep front reception, kitchenette area and boardroom tidy.
  • Perform various clerical duties such as filing, photocopying, and faxing on an as-needed basis.
  • Process client or other payments.
  • May be asked to run minor errands outside of office such as attending post office to arrange a courier or pick up mail.
  • May be asked to assist other law clerks or lawyers of the firm as required and as appropriate.
  • Any other basic administrative duties or tasks as deemed appropriate.

Required Skills:

  • Basic knowledge of general office procedures including filing, faxing, and printing and copying.
  • Basic word processing computer skills.
  • Proficient in receptionist and telephone practices, etiquette, and decorum.
  • Professional attitude and appearance.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Positive customer service attitude is a must.
  • Must be able to maintain confidential and sensitive information.

Education and Experience:

  • Highschool diploma or equivalent.
  • 1 – 2 years’ experience in an office setting with an emphasis in accounting, reception or clerical work is required.   We would prefer experience in a law firm environment.

Applications for this position should be sent via email to jennifer@zeilikmanlaw.com. All applications should include a cover letter, resume and at least two references. Only successful candidates will be contacted.