B.C. Tribunal Finds that Reduced Benefits for Employees Over Age 65 under Employer’s Benefit Plan is not Discriminatory

The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal (Tribunal) recently held that the decision to provide reduced benefits to employees over age 65 under an employer-sponsored benefit plan is not discrimination under the British Columbia Human Rights Code (Code) if the reduced benefits are provided as part of a “bona fide group or employee insurance plan” within…

Appellate Court Reviews “Family Status” Test

The British Columbia Court of Appeal recently clarified the meaning and scope of the term “family status” in Envirocon Environmental Services, ULC v. Suen. This case confirmed the Campbell River test, which imposes a higher standard for establishing discrimination than the often-cited Federal Court of Appeal test in Johnstone, adding to the “family status” interpretation…

Union Need Not be Involved in Every Accommodation Request, Appeal Court Rules (and the Supreme Court Agrees)

Earlier this year, the British Columbia Court of Appeal issued a helpful decision for employers dealing with accommodation issues in a unionized context. On September 7, 2017, the Supreme Court of Canada denied the union’s request for leave to appeal from the B.C. Court of Appeal decision. The B.C. Court of Appeal decision considered the…

Employees on LTD Not Automatically Entitled to Continued Employment for Purposes of Maintaining Group Benefits Coverage

In a recent decision, Corporation of the Township of Langley v. Canada Union of Public Employees, Local 403, the British Columbia Labour Relations Board set aside and ordered the reconsideration of an arbitration decision in which the Arbitrator had ruled that terminations of several employees on long-term disability (LTD) was discriminatory. Each of the terminated…

Appeal Court Affirms Exclusive Jurisdiction Model Applies in CFL Concussion Case

In a case that continues to attract media attention, the British Columbia Court of Appeal (Court) upheld a lower court decision that concluded it was without jurisdiction to hear claims brought against the Canadian Football League (CFL), its teams and various individuals relating to concussions alleged to have occurred to a former professional football player,…

What Nexus is Required to Establish a Tribunal’s Jurisdiction over Discriminatory Conduct Arising at a Workplace?

The Supreme Court of Canada will be delivering a decision likely to provide further clarity on the scope of the jurisdiction of British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal (Tribunal) to hear a complaint alleging discrimination regarding employment involving parties who work for different employers. On October 13, 2016, the Supreme Court of Canada granted leave to…

Federal Government Introduces Amending Legislation to Support CPP Enhancement

On October 6, 2016, the federal government introduced Bill C-26, An Act to amend the Canada Pension Plan, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board Act and the Income Tax Act, new omnibus legislation to support Canada Pension Plan (CPP) enhancement. If passed, Bill C-26 would, among other things, amend the CPP to: increase the maximum…

New Multi-Jurisdictional Pension Plan Agreement Now in Effect

Parties involved in the administration of pension plans have been waiting for Canadian pension regulators to agree to a new set of rules applicable to plans with members in more than one province. Recently, the governments of British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan signed a new Agreement Respecting Multi-Jurisdictional Pension Plans, which took effect July 1, 2016 (2016 Agreement)…

BC Court Dismisses CFL Concussion Case for Lack of Jurisdiction

In a recent decision that has garnered media attention, the Supreme Court of British Columbia concluded it was without jurisdiction to hear claims brought against the Canadian Football League (CFL), its teams and various individuals relating to concussions alleged to have occurred to a former professional football player…