Are you a dental office in Ontario with 20 or more employees?
If so, then you are legally required to file an accessibility compliance report by no later than December 31, 2017 under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).
The questions/requirements contained in the compliance report include the following:
If a person with a disability is accompanied by a support person, does your organization ensure that the persons are permitted to enter the premises together and that the person with a disability is not prevented from having access to the support person while on your premises?
Does your organization ensure that the required persons receive training on the accessibility standards for customer service?
Has your organization established a process for receiving and responding to feedback on the accessibility of its customer service and does it make information about the feedback process readily available to the public?
Other than the requirements cited in the above questions, is your organization complying with all other requirements in effect under the Customer Service Standard?
If your answer is not YES to all of the questions, then you are not in compliance with the AODA and your office may be audited to check on compliance. You are also required to re-submit the form if your compliance status changes.
Please note that the information provided herein should not be considered legal advice and is provided for informational and educational purposes only. If you need advice about your other obligations under the AODA, please contact me Ljubica Durlovska, Jonathan Borrelli, David Mayzel or Michael Carabash. We are your legal dental team.
As we mentioned earlier this year, Northern Ontario Dentists should make sure they are in full compliance with the Employment Standards Act. This includes making sure the ESA poster is up, abiding by the rules around hours of work, overtime pay, holiday pay agreements, public holidays, paid vacation, time between shifts, breaks, leaves of absences, and employee lists to name a few.
From October 2017 to December 2017, the Ministry of Labour will be auditing Dentists for employment standards compliance for the Northern Region (including North Bay, Sudbury, Timmins, Thunder Bay and Sault Ste. Marie).
If you are a dentist in this area and you are unsure about any aspect of ESA compliance, DMC LLP offers Employment Standards Act audits to make sure your practice can pass a ministry inspection easily. Give us a call and let us know if you have any questions.
Filed under Blog, Dental Hygienists, Staff · Tagged with audit, breaks, dental law, dental lawyers, DMC LLP, employee lists, employees, employment law, Employment Standards Act, ESA, ESA poster, holiday pay agreements, hours of work, Jonathan Borrelli, leaves of absences, North Bay, northern ontario, overtime pay, paid vacation, public holidays, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, time between shifts, Timmins
The Royal Ottawa Health Care Group was recently fined $75,000 for violating the Occupational Health and Safety Act (“OHSA“).
This decision stems from a series of events at Brockville Mental Health Centre. Starting in August 2014, multiple nurses were assaulted in various ways by patients over the span of a couple of months. Finally, in October 2014 a nurse was stabbed by a patient with a pen. The nurse, who had been escorting the patient to the bathroom when the patient lashed out, sustained serious injuries and the Ministry of Labour was notified of the incident.
The Royal Ottawa Health Care Group, which operates Brockville, was found guilty of failing to reassess the risks of workplace violence and to ensure policies and programs continue to protect workers (section 32.0.3(4) of the OHSA).
Because non-compliance with the OHSA is a provincial offence, the Ontario Court of Justice imposed a fine of $75,000. The court also added a 25% victim surcharge that goes into a provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.
You can read the Court Bulletin about this case here.
If you are wondering what you can do to make sure you don’t end up in the shoes of the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group, here is the takeaway:
Don’t simply provide violence policies / procedures and put them on the shelf, never to be seen again. Dust those policies off at least once a year and even more often when the need arises, as it did in this case.
We also advise involving your health and safety representative or joint health and safety committee in the process; ask them to review the policy and hold a staff meeting about ideas on how to improve the violence policies / procedures, if necessary. More involvement by workers in drafting and revising these types of policies means more compliance and adherence to those policies.
The same principles apply to your other policies, such as harassment, health and safety, sexual harassment, etc. For more blogs about your obligations under the OHSA, click here.
Please note that the information provided herein should not be considered legal advice and is provided for informational and educational purposes only. If you need advice about your obligations as an employer under the OHSA, or need help coming up with and implementing a new office policy manual, please contact me (Ljubica Durlovska), Jonathan Borrelli, David Mayzel or Michael Carabash. We are your legal dental team.
Yes, it’s true. The Ontario Ministry of Finance has started to audit dentists in order to ensure they have paid enough Employer Health Tax (EHT) for all employees. And they’re disputing dentist’s characterization of hygienists and associates as independent contractors (instead of employees)(! If they believe they should have been employees, then the practice would be on the hook for paying EHT, plus interest and penalties!!!
This is VERY BIG NEWS because, industry wide, many associates are considered independent contractors and their contracts are set up in that manner. But just saying in an agreement that a hygienist or an associate is an independent contractor ISN’T ENOUGH to actually make them so.
Canadian courts use the following four-fold criteria to determine whether a person is legally considered to be an independent contractor:
See Montreal v. Montreal Locomotive Works Limited,  1 DLR 161 (PC); Wiebe Door Services Ltd. v Minister of National Revenue,  2 CTC 200; and 671122 Ontario Ltd v Sagaz Industries Canada Inc., 2001 SCC 59.
Individuals who exert control over their own work, own their own tools, have the chance to profit and run the risk of loss will generally be considered independent contractors.
Importantly, the Supreme Court has held that there is no conclusive test to determine whether a person is an independent contractor or an employee The Courts will look at the totality of the relationship to determine if an individual is an employee or an independent contractor. More specifically, all of the facts must be considered in light of the common understanding of the parties’ legal relations. In other words: (1) was the subjective intention of the parties established or reflected in writing and / or by action and (2) does the objective reality, based on the four-fold criteria set out by the courts, sustain or deny the subjective intention of the parties?
See Royal Winnipeg Ballet v. Minister of National Revenue (2006), 2006 CarswellNat 2425 (Federal Court of Canada).
If you’ve been contacted by the Ontario Ministry of Finance about this, contact DMC LLP immediately and we will work with you to help get you the best possible results. If you haven’t been contacted yet, contact DMC LLP right now to help PREVENT this from happening by having your contracts drafted properly and the realities reflect a more truly independent relationship.
I’ve finally had a chance to review the 280-page federal budget for this year (building upon the work done by Michael Carabash on our blog) with an eye to employment law and what dentists need to know.
Here is my brief overview of changes we can expect as a result of the 2017 Federal Budget: Read more
Filed under Blog, Dental Hygienists, Staff · Tagged with benefits, budget, budget 2017, caregiver, children, cra, disability, DMC LLP, EI, EI benefits, email T4, employee, employees, employment insurance, enforcement, illness, injury, Jonathan Borrelli, maternity leave, parental leave, staff, t4, T4s, team
David Mayzel is your legal risk manager. He is a trained courtroom lawyer and has spent many years resolving disputes both in and out of court. He knows how to prepare documents and execute transactions in a way that avoids or mitigates legal risks. He can be reached at 416.528.5280. or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Carabash is your business law adviser. He is an entrepreneur at heart who helps you see the big legal picture. He drafts clear and effective agreements that protect your rights while promoting your interests. He can be reached at 647.680.9530. or email@example.com.
Ljubica Durlovska is your transition lawyer. She helps you with staff and associates, maintaining your corporation, and other business matters. She can be reached at 416.443.9280, extension 206 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jonathan Borrelli is your employment lawyer. He helps you with staff and associates matters, including hirings, terminations, switching staff to written contracts and resolving disputes. He can be reached at 416.443.9280, extension 204 or email@example.com.
Benjamin Kong is an experienced business law clerk. He assists David and Michael with corporate matters and purchase / sale transactions. He can be reached at 416.443.9280, extension 207 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Julie Whitehouse is an experienced business law clerk. She assists David and Michael with corporate matters and purchase / sale transactions. She can be reached at 416.443.9280, extension 203 or email@example.com.
David, Michael, Ljubica, Jonathan, Ben and Julie are a truly dynamic team. Their diverse knowledge, skills, and experiences will help you get the best deal possible while promoting your interests and protecting your rights. You can read dentist testimonials here.