Conference / Seminar

2014 Toronto Client Conference

Event Details

April 8, 2014
8:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

Hicks Morley Toronto Office
77 King Street West, 39th Floor
Toronto, ON

Stay on the leading edge of Human Resources change

Change is a constant in the human resources world – with new laws and court decisions and the evolution of best practices.

Employers must take the lead in responding to these emerging challenges – and Hicks Morley is pleased to be your partner in navigating this change. Join us as we discuss the latest legal developments – and present effective tips, strategies and practices that can help your organization stay on the leading edge of human resources management.




Registration and Continental Breakfast



Opening Remarks and Welcome



A Whirlwind Tour of Critical New Developments in Human Resources Law and Advocacy

A fast-paced, tightly focused review of developments that you need to know about.

The evolution of workplace pension and benefits programs

What a difference a generation makes. The 2014 Canadian pension and benefits landscape looks very different today than it did 30 years ago – and governments and employers continue to grapple with how to ensure that Canadians have affordable health benefits and a financially sound retirement. This presentation will provide an overview of current trends relating to workplace pension and benefit plans.

Anti-spam legislation – Is your organization ready?

On July 1, 2014, Canada’s new anti-spam legislation (CASL) will come into force and regulate “commercial electronic messages”. While this new legislation will impact some organizations more than others, all organizations should assess and revise as necessary their marketing, sales and other communications practices. This presentation will address CASL in a nutshell, and provide tips to help ensure your organization is ready.

Minimize your risk: Mental stress and the WSIB

Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Act contains strict limits on when an employee can claim WSIB benefits as a result of mental stress – either in the workplace or as a result of an injury. But decisions from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal (WSIAT) are expanding the scope of mental stress related benefits claims, and this has significant implications for how employers handle these cases. This session will review recent case-law developments, and provide guidance on the best practices that employers should be following to minimize the risks associated with a claim for mental stress.

Clarity emerging: Family status accommodation

While employees may request accommodation for childcare and eldercare obligations under human rights legislation on the basis of “family status,” the full scope of these protections – and the extent to which employers must accommodate – is still under development. But some clear principles and trends are emerging. This session will review recent developments in the case law, highlight the key trends, and provide employers with tips for assessing and responding to requests for accommodation.

Strategies for change: Terms and conditions of employment

The workplace is a dynamic place, and employers often need to make changes. But unilaterally changing the terms and conditions of employment creates the risk of a constructive dismissal claim. Limiting this risk and potential liability involves both a pragmatic understanding of the rules and awareness of the most recent developments in the law. This session will review strategies that employers can consider when implementing changes in their workplaces.

Liability check: The updated facts on pay equity

The financial consequences of failing to comply with the requirements of the Pay Equity Act can be staggering. Employers without valid pay equity plans – or those with plans that have not been maintained – could face liabilities going back 24 years. And recent initiatives being taken by the Pay Equity Commission have revealed the extent to which employers remain vulnerable. Understand what the legislation requires, and the challenges that it imposes on employers, before the Commission comes calling.

Contracts, covenants, compensation: Recent decisions that could impact you

Restrictive covenants are an important and always-evolving area of the law for employers – and they frequently overlap with the thorny issue of executive compensation. This session will provide you with in-depth knowledge and practical insights based on key recent decisions of the courts.

Health and safety first: Details on developments

There have been a number of recent developments in health and safety across a range of areas, from a determination of what defines a workplace under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, to criminal charges for health and safety violations, to decisions involving violence in the workplace. In this session, we will review some of these developments and what they mean for your organization.

Put it in writing: Tips for contract drafting

Written employment contracts offer many benefits – from tailoring terms and conditions to the needs of the parties, to; achieving greater certainty than the common law provides, to reducing the risk of litigation in the event of a future employment dispute. In this session, we will consider some recent developments in the cases, and what they tell us about drafting enforceable contractual terms.

The medium and the message: Employer communications during organizing campaigns

Your organization is facing an organization campaign, or perhaps has been served with a certification application. What can you say to your employees? Where is the line between employer free speech and an unjust labour practice to be drawn? In this session, we will review recent developments on what is permissible – and provide principles to help you develop a communications strategy should the need arise.


Conference Ends – Networking Opportunity