Whether you are an employer or an employee, we can help you with your employment or labour issues. We advise on all aspects of workplace rights and obligations arising in unionized and non-union workplaces.

Employment law is a complex area and requires an understanding of provincial and federal employment statutes. Our Employment and Labour team holds membership in the BC Human Resources Management Association, the Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers, the Trial Lawyers Association of BC and the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association. They have dealt with all levels of the B.C. courts, Human Rights Tribunal, Employment Standards, Labour Board, Canada Industrial Relations Board, WorkSafeBC and Office of the Privacy Commissioner, BC.

For employers

We provide proactive advice and planning services to ensure employers have employment/contractor agreements and policies that are not only effective and enforceable, but also aligned with corporate objectives. We advise on employment related matters such as overtime, averaging agreements, executive compensation, business immigration and stock option agreements, discipline and termination, human rights and accommodation, privacy, and WorkSafeBC matters.

We also assist employers with determining severance and notice periods, and developing strategies to minimize expenses while complying fully with provincial and federal regulations.
Our expertise in employment matters include:

  • Executive Compensation
  • Employment agreements
  • Independent Contractor agreements
  • Recruitment & Hiring
  • Restrictive Covenants
  • Overtime and averaging agreements
  • Confidentiality agreements
  • Non-Competition and Non-Solicitation Disputes
  • Termination and Severance packages
  • Human Rights
  • Disability and accommodation
  • Workplace Restructuring
  • Performance Management
  • Privacy in the Workplace
  • Conducting Investigations
  • Employment issues in the context of mergers and acquisitions
  • Occupational Health and Safety and WorkSafe BC issues

For employees

In the event of a termination, we are here to assist you and to help you achieve a fair result. We advise you of your rights and help you secure your entitlements.

Where the matter proceeds to a hearing, we regularly represent parties before courts and administrative tribunals, including civil actions where termination for cause is alleged. We are here to protect your best interests, because everyone is entitled to be treated fairly.

For employees, we are experienced and skilled in:

  • Executive Compensation
  • Employment agreements
  • Independent Contractor agreements
  • Overtime issues
  • Non-competition agreements
  • Confidentiality agreements
  • Severance pay
  • Non-Competition and Non-Solicitation Disputes
  • Human Rights
  • Occupational Health and Safety and WorkSafe BC issues

Labour

Our expertise in labour matters include:

  • Interpretation and application of collective agreements
  • Collective bargaining
  • Drafting collective agreements
  • Successorship and common employer issues
  • Certification and decertification
  • Discipline and termination
  • Workers’ compensation and occupational health and safety issues
  • Privacy
  • Human Rights, disability and accommodation

Mediation:

Workplace mediation is an informal, confidential and cost-effective process in which a neutral third party – the mediator, helps parties to resolve their disputes in a mutually acceptable way in a safe environment. Mediation can be effective in both union and non-union settings. Our expertise in workplace mediation includes, mediation in relation to:

  • complaints of bullying and harassment
  • complaints of sexual harassment
  • disputes between employees
  • employee performance
  • complaints of discrimination

Investigations:

Workplace investigations are often complex and challenging and the stakes are very high. Because careers and reputations are at stake, if the investigation is not conducted properly, it can make matters worse and possibly result in litigation. When you hire an experienced independent investigator, the risks associated with a poorly conducted investigation are minimized.

Our expertise includes investigating:

  • Bullying, harassment and discrimination
  • Sensitive matters involving senior employees and executives
  • Matters with serious financial implications
  • Hostile work environments
  • Sexual harassment
  • Policy breaches
  • Workplace health and safety incidents

Lawyers:

Joseph Cuenca

Heather Hettiarachchi