All employees in Canada are covered by the Canadian labour laws, some by provincial labour laws and the rest by the federal Canada Labour Code. Further complicating compliance, employers with operations in multiple provinces must comply with the laws of each province in which they do business, and certain industries are subject to federal labour law.
In order to navigate the web of legislation, clients retain Blakes. Our leading Labour Law lawyers are experienced and adept at handling the complex interplay of regulations and assuring compliance with all applicable laws. Applying our broad-based labour law experience, familiarity with the regulations and governing laws, we counsel clients effectively on labour law matters and represent them before regulatory bodies throughout Canada.
Members of the group advise businesses across industries on the full spectrum of labour law challenges they face. We counsel businesses with local operations as well as those operating in or expanding into Canada’s national marketplace, providing strategic advice on organizing activity, collective bargaining, labour relations, human rights issues, pay equity, and workplace health and safety.
While most industries fall under provincial jurisdiction, federal jurisdiction applies to businesses that are interprovincial and international in scope such as aviation/aerospace, banking and finance, communications, infrastructure, mining, technology and telecommunications. Clients benefit from the expertise of our dedicated industry groups in each of these areas, including our deep insight into their businesses, industry-specific issues and the regulatory framework applicable to each.
Our lawyers regularly appear before provincial labour relations boards and the Canada Industrial Relations Board, representing employers in proceedings such as applications for certification, unfair labour practice proceedings and sales of a business and/or related employer applications. The group has specific expertise in assisting employers during union-organizing campaigns. Clients often engage us to assist in negotiating and interpreting collective bargaining agreements and to attend arbitration hearings on behalf of management. Our lawyers are also retained to act as nominees on boards of arbitration, and they utilize those opportunities to mediate solutions for clients. Additionally, we represent clients in judicial reviews of arbitrators' decisions and in applications for injunctive relief as well as litigate every type of labour disputes before courts at all levels in Canada.