Sven Poysa, Kelly O’Ferrall, Abigail Omale, Briana MacEachern
Oct 5, 2023
B.C.’s new pay legislation and recent workplace trends, including mass layoffs and workforce reorganizations, are creating potential risks that employers are best to proactively address, a theme that emerged during the September Employment and Labour Insights webinar. The presenters included partners Sven Poysa and Kelly O’Ferrall and associates Abigail Omale and Briana MacEachern.
With the new B.C. pay legislation, employers can no longer ask job applicants about their pay history or previous pay rate, whether directly or through a third party. As of November 1, 2023 employers will be required to include the expected pay or pay range for a specific job posted publicly. While no penalties for non-compliance have been assigned, they may be in the future, and employers are best to update their policies, including pay policy, recruiting policy and employee handbook, and educate front-line managers and other company leaders on the legislation.
In the current environment of hiring waves and layoffs, employers face the risk of constructive dismissal litigation. When terms of employment change, employers can best protect themselves by giving the employee reasonable notice of the change, as well as being clear in writing that rejection of the change will result in termination of their employment at the end of the notice period as of a specific date. Obtaining express consent in the form of written documentation is the best way of providing proof of the employee’s agreement to the change, but the employee’s conduct can also work in the employer’s favour. In this case, the employee will be found to have agreed to the change if, after receiving notice of the change, the employee does not object for a reasonable period of time.
Watch the full webinar