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Settlement Agreements

"Top 10 Employment And Labour Law Cases In 2013" according to Cassels Brock & Blackwell

The law firm of Cassels Brock & Blackwell has issued their, "Top 10 Employment And Labour Law Cases In 2013". 

The cases on their list are set below. Note: the summaries with the cases are mostly my word-for-word cut and paste's from the original article:

1. Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada, Local 30 v. Irving Pulp & Paper, Ltd., 2013 SCC 34

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that random alcohol testing in the workplace is prohibited unless the employer can prove that, in addition to having a dangerous workplace, there are other pressing factors such as an overt substance abuse problem in the workplace.

2. Pate Estate v. Harvey (Township), 2013 ONCA 669

The Ontario Court of Appeal agreed that the Township employer had severely mistreated the dismissed employee, but reduced the punitive damages award from $550,000 to $450,000.  read more »

Chief did not have actual or ostensible authority to bind Indian band to wrongful dismissal settlement agreement

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - First Nations

In Clayton v. Lower Nicola Indian Band, 2013 BCSC 162, the BC Supreme Court found, by way of a summary trial, that the then chief of the Lower Nicola Indian Band did not have actual or ostensible authority to bind the band to a wrongful dismissal settlement agreement with its former executive director.

In a previous reported decision involving these parties - Clayton v. Lower Nicola Indian Band, 2011 BCSC 525 - it was disclosed that the settlement agreement provided for a $100,000 payment to the former executive director, who had been in her position for just under two years (January 14, 2008 to January 8, 2010).

BC HR Tribunal awards $900 in costs against former employee who tried to resile from settlement agreement

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

In Edwards v. Schnitzer Steel Pacific, 2012 BCHRT 335, the BC Human Rights Tribunal:

  • granted the employer's application to dismiss the former employee's human rights complaint under section 27(1)(d)(ii) of the BC Human Rights Code; and
  • awarded the employer $900 in costs due to the fact that the former employee had tried to resile from a settlement agreement that he had previously entered into, with the assistance of his lawyer, with the employer.

"Tax Considerations for Employment Related Settlements"

"Tax Considerations for Employment Related Settlements" (November 4, 2010) is the title of a paper prepared by Natasha Miklaucic for the Borden Ladner Gervais 13th Annual Labour & Employment Group Symposium. 

"Trade Union Responsibility Under S.13 & 14 of the Human Rights Code"

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Unions

"Trade Union Responsibility Under S.13 & 14 of the Human Rights Code" is the title of a paper written by Shanti P. Reda and Stephanie T. Mayor, lawyers at Black Gropper in Vancouver.

The authors presented the paper at the 2010 CLEBC Human Rights Conference in Vancouver on November 4, 2010.

Former Vancouver police officer obtains $2 million out of court settlement in wrongful dismissal case

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Public Safety

Both the Vancouver Sun and Globe and Mail newspapers carried stories this week about former Vancouver police officer Allen Dalstrom obtaining a $2 million out of court settlement in relation to a wrongful dismissal case.

This is a significant settlement in any wrongful dismissal case, particularly one involving a police officer who is reported to have been earning about $100,000 a year.

Although this week's media stories provide a lot of the colour about the case, I relied mainly on the decision in Dalstrom v. Organized Crime Agency of BC, 2008 BCSC 844, which dealt with a pre-trial application, for my summary of the facts and proceedings below.  


Dalstrom was a long term police officer with the Vancouver Police Department. In 2000, he was recruited to join the Organized Crime Agency of British Columbia ("OCABC").

The OCABC is responsible for combating organized crime in BC and Dalstrom was appointed supervisor of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gang Team.  read more »

Claim allowed to proceed against pension consultants who assisted employer in converting from DB Plan to DC Plan

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The case of Dawson v. Tolko Industries Ltd. involves a lawsuit that has been filed by 47 current and 17 former employees of Tolko Industries ("Tolko") in relation to the conversion of their pension plan from a defined benefit ("DB") plan to a defined contribution ("DC") plan. The trial is currently set for August 2010.

The recent decision in Dawson v. Tolko Industries Ltd., 2010 BCSC 346 involved a pre-trial application by certain defendants to have the case dismissed against them.


In or around 1997,Tolko offered its employees a cash amount in exchange for agreeing to convert from a DB pension plan to a DC plan.  The 65 current and former employees accepted the offer. The basis of the lawsuit is that the value of the pension benefits under the DC plan is much less than it would have been under the DB plan.

In addition to Tolko, the current and former employees also named as defendants the following:  read more »