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Labour Law in Canada

Labour Law in Canada

By Donald D. Carter, Geoffrey England, Brian D. Etherington, Gilles Trudeau


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For a clear understanding of the legal protections and remedies available to employers and workers in Canada, this convenient survey and analysis is ideal. Although it may be said that there are eleven distinct systems of labour law in Canada - encompassing ten provinces and the Federal government - the authors ensure depth of treatment by focusing on common policy themes and typical legal solutions, with significant departures noted in whatever province or area of law they may arise. However, the relevant law of the three most populous and influential provinces - Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia - is covered in particular detail, as is Federal labour legislation and case law.

Among the important areas of Canadian law and practice emphasised are the following:

  • the tension between trade union power and business flexibility;
  • collective "labour law" and individual "employment law";
  • the effect of the North American Free Trade Agreement;
  • the central place of the legal concept of the employment contract;
  • labour standards legislation;
  • the influence of the 1982 Charter of Rights and Freedoms;
  • court intervention in labour law, both under common law principles and Quebec's civil code;
  • the role of labour relations boards; and
  • judicial review of administrative decisions and arbitration awards.

    As an accurate and usable guide for lawyers not expert in Canadian law, Labour Law in Canada is without peer. It will be of particular value to business investors and their counsel.

  • Publish Date 12/01/2001
    Publish Frequency As Needed
    Product Line Kluwer Law International
    ISBN 9789041117502
    SKU 10058165-0001
    Table of Contents
      List of Abbreviations
      I. General Observations
      II. General Background Information
      III. General Notions and Special Definitions
      IV. The Canadian Labour Movement
      V. The Role of Government Institutions in the Shaping and Administration of Labour Law and Industrial Relations Policy
      VI. Sources of Labour Law

      Part I. The Individual Employment Relationship
      Chapter I. Definitions and Concepts
      1. The Central Place of the Contract of Employment
      2. Distinguishing the Contract of Employment from other Contracts to Provide Service
      3. Formation of Contracts of Employment

      Chapter II. Rights and Duties of the Parties to the Employment Relationship
      1. The Roots of such Rights and Duties
      2. The Employer's Duties and Obligations
      3. The Employee's Duties and Obligations
      4. Termination of Employment
      5. Remedies for Breach of Contract

      Part II. Collective Labour Relations
      Chapter I. Trade Unions and Their Organizations
      1. Trade Union Membership and Characteristics
      2. The Canadian Labour Congress
      3. Legal Status of Trade Unions

      Chapter II. The Right to Organize
      1. The Need for Statutory Protection
      2. Protection of the Rights of Individual Employees
      3. Protection of Trade Union Rights
      4. Reconciling Employee, Employer and Trade Union Rights
      5. Remedies

      Chapter III. Legal Recognition of Collective Bargaining Rights
      1. The Source of Collective Bargaining Rights
      2. Acquisition of Collective Bargaining Rights
      3. The Shape of the Collective Bargaining Structure
      4. Transfer and Termination of Bargaining Rights

      Chapter IV. The Collective Bargaining Process
      1. The Union's Exclusive Authority to Bargain
      2. The Statutory Freeze
      3. Dispute-settlement Procedures
      4. Conduct of Negotiations

      Chapter V. Industrial Conflict
      1. The Role of Conflict in the Canadian System of Industrial Relations
      2. Forms of Conflict
      3. Lawful Economic Sanctions
      4. Unlawful Industrial Action
      5. Remedies for Unlawful Industrial Action

      Chapter VI. Collective Agreements
      1. The Collective Agreement
      2. Administration and Enforcement of the Collective Agreement
      3. The Limited Role of the Courts
      4. The Role of Labour Boards