i) A recent decision from the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario found that there should not be a different test for discrimination with respect to the protected ground of family status. The Tribunal stated that the test is simply (1) that an applicant is a member of a protected group, (2) that the applicant has experienced adverse treatment, and (3) that the ground of discrimination was a factor in the adverse treatment. This case appears to reject the previous test for family status set out by the Federal Court of Appeal.
ii) The Quebec Superior Court recently awarded damages to an employee for stress and anxiety associated with the early termination of a fixed term contract. The Court found that employees in Quebec are entitled to claim damages for trouble, inconvenience and moral prejudice when a fixed term contract is ended early, without a serious reason for the early termination.
iii) The British Columbia Court of Appeal recently held that it was not appropriate to award damages against an employee for his failure to provide notice prior to his resignation. In that case, the employee had been employed for five years prior to his resignation. The employee then resigned without giving notice and went into competition with the employer through his own company. At trial, the judge awarded damages against the employee for his failure to give notice prior to his resignation in the amount of approximately $56,000. On appeal, the quantum of damages was challenged and the employee argued that the company had not proved that it suffered any damages from his failure to give notice. The Court of Appeal found that the employee should have given one month of notice prior to his resignation, but that the employer had not suffered any losses as a result of his failure to give notice. As such, the award of damages was set aside.