On November 5, 2020, the Ontario government tabled its 2020 Budget, Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover (Budget), and introduced supporting implementation legislation, Bill 229, Protect, Support and Recover from COVID-19 Act (Budget Measures), 2020(Bill 229).
On October 14, 2020, the Department of Finance Canada released its latest backgrounder regarding the CEWS. The Extending the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy backgrounder (Backgrounder) summarizes a number of new and recently announced changes to the CEWS, including the extension of the CEWS to June 2021.
On October 9, 2020, the Supreme Court of Canada released its decision in Matthews v. Ocean Nutrition Canada Ltd. It confirmed that where terminated employees would be entitled to a bonus or other incentive payments during the reasonable notice period, employers must use clear and unambiguous language to remove or limit their common law rights. The Supreme Court also distinguished between the obligation to provide reasonable notice of termination and a breach of the duty to exercise good faith in the manner of dismissal.
The federal government has announced that it intends to extend the current treatment of employees on leave with pay under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program by a further four weeks, from September 27, 2020 to October 24, 2020 (CEWS claim period 8).
Sponsors of defined benefit (DB) pension plans registered in Ontario have been given significant temporary contribution relief as part of the Ontario government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On September 21, 2020, Ontario Regulation 520/20 (Regulation) was filed. The Regulation amends Regulation 909 made under the Ontario Pension Benefits Act (PBA) to permit temporary contribution deferral for certain eligible DB pension plans, and extend the time over which catch-up contributions following the filing of a new valuation report must be made.
The federal government has announced that it proposes to extend the current treatment of employees on leave with pay under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program by four weeks, from August 30, 2020 to September 26, 2020 (CEWS claim period 7).
In the latest evolution of the federal government’s response to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, on August 19, 2020, amendments to the Employment Insurance Act (EI Act) were published and, on August 20, 2020, the government announced new measures to support affected Canadians who continue to be unable to work due to COVID-19.
The federal government has announced the launch of an updated online calculator to help employers prepare for the next period of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program. Employers can use the updated CEWS calculator for claim periods 1 through 5, and more periods will be added as they become available.
On July 27, 2020, the federal government passed Bill C-20, An Act respecting further COVID-19 measures (Bill C-20), which amends the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) first enacted in April 2020 with Bill C-14, the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act, No. 2 (Bill C-14). Since April, there have been a number of changes to the CEWS. Bill C-20 implements the modified rules for the CEWS program that apply from June onward.
In this FTR Now we provide a comprehensive summary of the CEWS, including the new details of the CEWS extension to December 19, 2020, and we incorporate content from our previous firm communications dated March 30, 2020, April 2, 2020, April 9, 2020, April 13, 2020, and April 20, 2020.
Participating employers in the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) should be aware of five amendments to the OMERS Primary Pension Plan (Primary Plan) approved by the OMERS Sponsors Corporation Board (SC Board) on June 24, 2020. The changes will be of interest to employers in the municipal and school board sectors with employees who participate in OMERS and include several amendments to address COVID-19-related issues. In addition, two non-COVID-19-related amendments were adopted, including a major change to eligibility for non-full-time employees.