15th Jul 2013
Employment contracts are becoming the biggest loophole in workplace law – but that loophole only works for employers.
Companies, with acute knowledge of how employment contracts can operate to their advantage, are increasingly requiring staff to sign one-sided agreements that reduce their legal rights.
These employees – most without any bargaining power, or worse, without an understanding of the law – often do not realize their legal interests are being undermined.
But if the law permits employers to do it, then why would they not try to prevent expensive lawsuits, large severance packages and competition from former employees, all with the stroke of a pen? more
25th Nov 2012
This is the tale of two recent appeal cases, which together confirm my “Kitchen Sink” theory on employment contracts. That is, employers often bargain for excessive protection, no matter how junior or administrative the employee. However, in seeking such protection, they sometimes get none at all. more
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions I received in 2010 – and the advice I provide for employees in 2011. more
10th Nov 2012
When it comes to employment contracts, all is fair in love and war, as pretty much anything can be incorporated into the agreement. Employees should, therefore, beware of the certain terms. more
Do contracts really matter or are they irrelevant? In the often confusing world of workplace law, why are some agreements upheld, when many others are simply overlooked? The answer depends on the purpose that the contract is meant to serve. more
7th Oct 2012
Could you comment on Canadian case law about non-compete and non-solicitation clauses? My new employer is insisting that I sign one, and the battle to get it removed is proving unhealthy for my relations with the employer even before I start. more
30th Sep 2012
Many disputes are rooted in, and later resolved on the basis of, policy. Or at least they should be. This applies in law as much as it does in life: our courts do not always decide employment cases based on what is reasonable or just, but rather, on what makes for the best workplace policy. more
Poor performance may be cause for dismissal. more
Employment is a two-way street. Just as they can be dismissed without notice, employees are not “owned.” They are always free to leave. However, disputes often arise when they try to take their clients with them. Since clients’ affiliations often lie with the relationships that are built and the key employees who have built them, courts permit employers to protect their clients through contractual limits on post-employment competition and solicitation. But what happens when there is no contract at all? more
Thinking of jumping ship to the competition? You better think twice before taking your clients with you. Nothing infuriates a company more than news of an ex-employee soliciting away its most prized assets: the clients. But clients, much like those employees, are not sedentary. Seldom are they attracted to one company or another exclusively by virtue of the services they are offered. Rather, their affiliation lies with the relationships that are built and the key employees who have built them. more