Directors & Officers
In Unique Broadband Systems, Inc. (Re), 2014 ONCA 538, the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled that a director of a company breached his fiduciary duties in approving an excessive compensation package for himself and the other directors and that his actions were not protected by the business judgment rule.
The New Brunswick government has introduced "improvements" to its Employment Standards Act. This is the full news release that was issued on Wednesday, December 3, 2013:
Improvements to Employment Standards Act introduced
The provincial government introduced today amendments to the Employment Standards Act that will improve its ability to protect foreign workers in New Brunswick.
The amendments will create an employer registry that will strengthen the communication of the provincial government with foreign workers and their employers about employment standards and the rights and responsibilities of employees and employers.
The amendment adds provisions to ensure employers only recover allowable recruitment and transportation costs from the foreign workers themselves. It clarifies legal practices with respect to foreign worker housing arrangements and the holding of personal documents such as passports and work permits. read more »
Kevin O'Neill, a lawyer at Faskens, has written an article entitled, "A New Twist on Director’s Liability for Unpaid Wages in a Unionized Environment" (March 15, 2011). The article was published in the firm's HR Space newsletter.
It addresses the decision of the BC Employment Standards Tribunal in Writers Guild of Canada and The Director of Employment Standards, BC EST #RD021/11.
As noted by Mr. O'Neil in the article:
- The BC Employment Standards Act imposes liability on directors or officers for up to two months of unpaid wages for each affected employee.
- However, in the Writers Guild case, a company director "avoided ESA enforcement proceedings against him because the unpaid amounts arose out of an arbitration award against the company, in a unionized setting".
Lawyer George Waggott and student Mariam Al-Shikarchy, both at Lang Michener in Toronto, have written a paper on "Directors and Officers Liability in the Employment Context" (February 2010). The paper addresses the following topics: read more »
Steve Levitt at Nelligan O'Brien Payne LLP in Ottawa has written article entitled, "When to combine oppression and wrongful dismissal claims". The article was published in the November 6, 2009 edition of The Lawyers Weekly.
The article discusses the Ontario Divisional Court's decision in 2082825 Ontario Inc. v. Platinum Wood Finishing Inc., 2009 CanLII 14394 (ON S.C.D.C.), which upheld a trial judge's decision that combined a wrongful dismissal claim with an oppression remedy application.
Global consulting firm Watson Wyatt's August 2009 survey of 53 Canadian companies reveals that 28 percent are changing their pay mix – mostly to put more emphasis on
bonuses and performance shares, with less focus on stock options.
Robert Levasseur, senior consultant of executive compensation at Watson Wyatt, states in the September 17, 2009 press release that:
“Stock options are certainly under pressure during a recession where
many organizations have seen their share price plunge by as much as 40
per cent. Many executives have been left with worthless underwater
options and current valuations call for very high option grants which
would be highly dilutive to un-accepting shareholders,”
“The employee stock option plan will remain a staple in Canadian
executive pay plans because it is the only long term incentive vehicle
that offers a tax advantage to plan participants. However, as
organizations regroup, it is not surprising to see a shift towards
annual cash base incentives.”