2018 EI Premium Rate, Maximum Insurable Earnings Set

The Canada Employment Insurance Commission (CEIC) has set the 2018 Employment Insurance (EI) premium rate at$1.66 per $100 of insurable earnings. This represents a 3 cent increase for employees over the 2017 rate, and 4 cents for employers who pay 1.4 times the employee rate. For Quebec residents covered under the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan,…

Employee Discounts: To Tax, or Not to Tax? That is Indeed the Question

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)’s recently revised position on employee discounts is attracting significant media coverage. In 2016, the CRA published an updated technical document on “Benefits and Allowances Received from Employment” (Income Tax Folio S2-F3-C2*), which provides that employee discounts on merchandise for less than fair market value are considered taxable benefits under the…

Ontario Expands Access to Licensed Childcare in Schools

The Ontario government has announced that effective September 1, 2017, all publicly funded elementary schools serving students up to Grade 6 are required to provide before- and after-school programs for children aged 4-12 where there is a sufficient demand. The programs may be operated by a school board through a licensed childcare provider for children…

Ontario to Introduce Significant Amendments to Employment and Labour Laws

On May 30, 2017, the Ontario government announced its intention to introduce The Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017 (Act), omnibus legislation proposing a series of broad ranging, significant amendments to Ontario’s Employment Standards Act, 2000 and Labour Relations Act, 1995. According to the government’s announcement, the Act will contain a package of proposed legislative…

Ontario Announces Additional Funding to Reduce Class Sizes and to Support Students at Risk

The Ontario government has announced that nine central agreements have been reached between trustees’ associations and education workers’ unions and teachers’ federations. These agreements will be in force from September 1, 2017 to August 31, 2019. The government has also announced additional funding for the following: to hire approximately 875 teachers and 1600 education workers…

New Private Member Bill Proposes “Card Check” Unionization, First Contract Arbitration Model for Ontario

On April 4, 2017, the New Democratic Party (NDP) of Ontario introduced private member legislation that would amend the Labour Relations Act, 1995 (Act) to bring “card check” union certification back to Ontario for the first time since 1995, and to implement a new first contract arbitration process. It is important to note that private…