When a contract expires with no prospect of a settlement, the union has three choices: For many years, unions mostly stuck to the first two options. Members often fear that, if the contract is allowed to expire, the employer will no longer be bound on such vital matters as seniority, contracting out, pensions, health insurance, union release time, bumping, and past practice. The most common example is that employee has the right to get paid for the work they do, and the employer has a right to give reasonable instructions to the employee for him/her to work … In all provinces in Canada, laws exist outlining the minimum amount of notice an employer must provide. There is no clear formula, but judges now consider such things as years of service, the employee's age (if the employee is older, he may require more time to find a new job = more notice), employee's education (if the employee has a high school diploma, she may find it more difficult to find work = more notice).  In the end, an employee with 10 years of service may be entitled to between 6 months and a year of notice. In the absence of a written employment contract that provides the employer the ability to make such changes, an employee may be entitled to refuse the changes and sue the employer for constructive dismissal claim. I reproduce the notice provisions in Manitoba's Employment Standards Code  below. Our focus is on helping families and small businesses with many of the most common legal situations they face. TTY (Teletypewriter): 1-800-457-8466 Canada, Phone: 604-775-5525 And we take time to ensure you understand your legal standing.Â.  First is with just cause. Good question!  While The Employment Standards Code outlines a maximum notice period of 8 weeks, that is simply the minimum amount.  If you entered into a verbal contract or a court determines that an employment contract came to exist by conduct, judges will read or listen to the parties' testimony. Because without a written employment contract, courts will impose obligations you would not have considered taking. For example, if you terminate an employee with 7 years of employment, you must provide 6 weeks of notice. An employer can refuse to arbitrate grievances filed after a contract expires, except those that concern events or rights that occurred before expiration. Never use the terms “final” or “deal-breaker.”, Never characterize a union or employer demand as “nonnegotiable.”. If you are working for someone, there will always be a contract between you as the employee and your employer. If the employer cancels a valuable benefit or practice, the union can file a ULP charge at the NLRB or state labor board. And if you do not have a written contract, your ability to respond to these damaging scenarios is limited. Now, before I explain how those obligations may cost you tens of thousands of dollars (Yes, I said TENS of THOUSANDS), you need to understand how little control you have, once employees start working … There are a number of other potential issues to be avoided by employers, and also many benefits to be enjoyed from a well-constructed written employment contract.  A judge could quadruple that amount. This contract is what governs the relationship between you, the employer, and your employees, but having an unwritten one is fraught with uncertainty and ambiguity. Many employers will respond to these new needs by modifying existing duties, varying compensation or even reassigning employees to new positions. Labor law is clear that an employer must maintain the status quo, including both written agreements and consistent past practices—with only three exceptions, detailed below. A contract of employment is an agreement that exists between an employer and employee, and sets out terms such as employment rights, responsibilities and duties. The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Informational picketing can be conducted to put the employer—and its customers—in a constant state of alarm about an imminent strike. You are stuck with the minimum. At Small Business BC, we’ve got the resources and supports you need for your business to succeed. Available via phone and email Monday – Wednesday, Friday9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Do you ever worry that a key employee is going to take your fantastic idea, leave and start to compete against you? When a contract expires with no prospect of a settlement, the union has three choices: Additionally, employers may wish to institute new workplace policies that were never discussed at the outset of the employment relationship. They can be found here, in the The Employment Standards Code. Under The Employment Standards Code, you must pay him 2 months of salary = $6,400.00. Not an easy sum for someone whose business is struggling. We listen. Give $10 a month or more and get our "Fight the Boss, Build the Union" T-shirt. Deadlock on a single issue is not sufficient, unless the issue causes a complete breakdown in negotiations. Oops!  Your economic reality is irrelevant.  Even if you try to include a provision in the contract stating that you can terminate without cause without providing any notice period, a court would find that provision invalid. Matters bargained to impasse. Now, before I explain how those obligations may cost you tens of thousands of dollars (Yes, I said TENS of THOUSANDS), you need to understand how little control you have, once employees start working for you. This uncertainty and ambiguity is likely to work against the employer. An employer without a written contract also misses out on the many benefits of having a well drafted written employment contract. $30 for 12 issues. Add your business to our BC Marketplace and tap into a province-wide audience looking to shop local and support small businesses like yours. As that employee has already left, you must now come up with an additional $25,600.00... $25,600.00 = common law imposed notice v. $6,400.00 contract limited notice = $19,200.00 saved. Find out the early stage financing options for small business by attending this practical seminar.</p>\\n","image":"https://smallbusinessbc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/early-stage-finance-small.jpg","url":"https://smallbusinessbc.ca/education/early-stage-financing-for-small-business-2020-11-27/","offers":[{"@type":"Offer","url":"https://smallbusinessbc.ca/education/early-stage-financing-for-small-business-2020-11-27","price":"0","category":"primary","availability":"SoldOut","priceCurrency":"CAD","validFrom":"2020-06-01T00:00:00+00:00","validThrough":"2020-11-27T00:00:00+00:00"}],"startDate":"2020-11-27T13:00:00-08:00","endDate":"2020-11-27T14:30:00-08:00","location":{"@type":"Place","name":"","description":"","url":"https://smallbusinessbc.ca/venue/24501/","address":{"@type":"PostalAddress","streetAddress":"Waterfront Station, 601 W Cordova St #54","addressLocality":"Vancouver","addressRegion":"British Columbia","postalCode":"V6B 1G1","addressCountry":"Canada"},"telephone":"(604) 775-5525","sameAs":""},"performer":"Organization"}]. The union can call a one- or two-day “warning” or “grievance” strike. Just double-click and easily create content. See the box for suggestions. How do courts determine contractual obligations when no written contract exists? That does not necessarily mean that you will have that contractual arrangement reduced to writing. Fax: 604-775-5520 We give good advice.  The judge could rule that the employee was entitled to notice of termination (more on this below).If you must terminate someone with cause, that employee is clearly a liability to the business. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged. If management tries to carry on as before, the union can file a stream of unfair labor practice (ULP) charges at the NLRB, forcing the employer to incur legal expenses and allowing the union to position future walkouts as ULP strikes.