Jason  Hanson

Jason Hanson, Partner, Employment & Labour

Contact Information

  • tel: 416.862.6633
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Bar Admission

Ontario, 1982


  • University of Windsor, J.D.
  • University of Toronto, B.A.






Jason is a certified labour law specialist with extensive experience in advising employers and boards of directors on all areas of labour and employment law, including corporate transactions, executive compensation arrangements, collective bargaining, change of control agreements, privatizations, restructurings, outsourcing, alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, legislative compliance and privacy. He has represented employers before labour relations and employment tribunals and various courts including the Supreme Court of Canada. He also conducts discrimination investigations and works with employers in developing pro­active employment policies and procedures and defends corporate employers and individuals in health and safety prosecutions. Jason has gained deep and comprehensive experience over his 30 year career with Osler. Jason is a former two-term elected member of Osler’s Executive Committee and is the Chair of the Firm’s National Employment and Labour Department.

Notable Matters

  • Labour relations strategy for major business restructurings.
  • Workplace change strategy in broader public sector employer leading to material decline in workplace disputes. Executive retention and restructuring for national and international businesses.
  • Strategies for multi­national employers to achieve compliance with international export control laws and domestic discrimination laws.
  • Pro­active strategies and policies in financial services, manufacturing, logistics, retail and broader public sector.

Reported cases include:

  • Toronto Hydro v. CUPE Local One [2011]. Successfully presented leading case dealing with Labour Board discretion to dismiss unfair labour practice complaints on a preliminary, discretionary basis.
  • Toronto Hydro v. CUPE Local One [2008]. Successfully presented leading case dealing with organizational change across multi­location operations.
  • Toronto (City) v. CUPE Local 79 [2003] 3 S.C.R. 77 (Supreme Court of Canada). Successfully presented this leading case before Canada’s highest court requiring labour arbitrators to follow the findings of the criminal courts.
  • General Electric Canada v. Professional & Technical Engineers, [2002] O.L.A.A. No. 516. Successfully presented this leading case preserving management’s flexibility in assigning software design tasks despite union objections.
  • General Motors of Canada Ltd. and CAW­Canada, Local 199 (2001), 93 L.A.C. (4th) 329. Successfully presented this leading case preserving management’s right to determine location of business activities.


  • American Bar Association, Alternative Dispute Resolution in Labor and Employment Law Committee
  • Canadian Bar Association, National Labour Law Section, Honourary Executive Member
  • Law Society of Upper Canada
  • Certified by the Law Society as a Specialist in Labour Law

Industry Recognition

Jason’s expertise and industry knowledge has been recognized by many independent groups, including:

  • Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Business Lawyers 2015: Employment & Labour
  • The Best Lawyers in Canada 2014: Labour and Employment Law


Jason has spoken extensively, was an instructor of the Masters Programme at Osgoode Hall Law School and is the co-author of two employment law books on absenteeism and substance abuse. Other recent publications:

Because Jason’s clients are located around the world, Jason regularly presents Employment and Labour webinars:

  • Employment & Labour Legal Developments: Key Considerations for Employers, September 2014
  • Legal Risk Management: Recent Canadian Employment Law Developments May Impact Your Business, June 2014
  • Managing Legal Risk: Employment and Labour in Canada, April 2014
  • Business Risk Management Strategies: Key Employment Law Developments to Consider, December 2013
  • Business Risk Management: Key Employment Law Developments, April 2013
  • Key Developments in Employment & Labour Law, September 2012
  • U.S./Canada Labour & Employment Law (Two Part Webinar), December 2011 & January 2012

Pro Bono/Community Work

  • The York School, former Chair of the Board