Canada: Jurisdictional Summary- Newfoundland And Labrador

Last Updated: December 19 2014
Practice Guide by Blaney McMurtry LLP

All references are to the Labour Standards Act, RSNL 1990, C L-2 unless noted otherwise. REG refers to Newfoundland and Labrador's Labour Standards Regulations, CNLR 781/96.

HOURS OF WORK Employees must be permitted to take not less than 8 consecutive hours off work in each unbroken 24 hour period of employment, except in the event of an emergency that constitutes imminent hazard to life or property (23)

Standard working hours are 40 hours each week (REG 5(1))
EATING PERIODS (Referred to as Rest Period in Act). Employees are entitled to an unbroken rest period of 1 hour immediately following each 5 consecutive hours worked (24)
REST PERIODS (Referred to as Day of Rest in Act). Every employee is allowed to have a period of rest of not less than 24 consecutive hours during each week of employment, and this rest is to be on Sunday where possible (22)
OVERTIME Employees are entitled to overtime pay where they work in excess of the standard hours permitted, subject to the regulations. Under the legislation, employers may compensate employees for overtime hours by giving 1.5 times paid time off work for each hour of overtime worked instead of pay where the parties agree to such and the time off is taken within 3 months of the week in which the overtime was earned (25(2))

Current overtime wage is set to a minimum of $15.00 hourly (REG 9)
MINIMUM WAGE Set by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council (27).

Current minimum wage is $10.00 hourly (REG 8(4))
MINIMUM AGE Employers shall not employ any person under 16 if the work is: likely to be unwholesome or harmful to the child's health or normal development, prejudicial to his or her attendance at school or in a hazardous occupation and in any event not: for more than 8 hours a day or 3 hours on a school day, subject to a certificate under the School Attendance Act or between 10pm and 7am of the same period (46). There are several other less notable exceptions.
VACATION Employees are entitled to vacation pay where he or she has worked for at least 90% of normal working hours in a continuous 12 month period and his or her employment does not stop before the end of that period; vacation pay is granted within 10 months after the end of this period for a period of at least 2 weeks, paid at 4% of total wages (8(1))

If the employee has 15 years of continuous employment, he or she is entitled to at least 3 weeks at 6% pay (8(1.1))
HOLIDAY Public holidays include New Year's Day, Good Friday, Remembrance Day, Memorial Day, Labour Day and Christmas Day (14(1))

Employees are not required to work on public holidays and are entitled to pay on these days at current wages (15).

If the holiday falls on a day the employee is not required to work, the first working day immediately following (or a date agreed to by the parties) applies as if the day not worked was a public holiday (16). Exception exists for employers engaged in an undertaking responsible for the operation of a public utility service, the provision of a service which in the Minister's opinion is necessary in the public interest or a service traditionally carried on without regard to Sundays or holidays if they pay the employee twice the wages properly earned and permit 1 full holiday within 30 days (18)
EQUAL PAY Employers shall not establish or maintain differences in wages between employees employed in the same establishment who are performing, under the same or similar working conditions, the same or similar work on jobs requiring the same or similar skill, effort and responsibility on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination, except where that payment is made under a seniority or merit system (Human Rights Act, 2010 SNL 2010, c H-13.1)
LEAVES OF ABSENCE PREGNANCY - Pregnant employees employed for at least 20 consecutive weeks preceding the birth date are entitled to unpaid leave no earlier than 17 weeks before the expected birth date, after providing the employer 2 weeks' written notice and a medical certificate attesting to the pregnancy (40). Pregnancy leave is 17 weeks in length (42)

ADOPTION - Employees with at least 20 consecutive weeks of employment and who are parents of a child are entitled to unpaid leave following the coming of a child into the care of the parent for the first time, having provided their employer with 2 weeks' written notice (43). Adoption leave is 17 weeks in length (43.2)

PARENTAL - Employees with at least 20 consecutive weeks of employment who are the parent of a child are entitled to unpaid leave following the birth of a child or the coming of a child into their care, and may begin no more than 35 weeks after the day the child is born or comes into the parent's care, having provided their employer with 2 weeks' notice (43.3). Parental leave is 35 weeks in length (43.5)

BEREAVEMENT & SICK - Employees with at least 30 days of continuous employment are entitled to one day paid and 2 days unpaid for the death of a spouse, child, grandchild, mother or father, brother or sister, grandparents or in-law (43.10)

SICK & FAMILY - Employees with at least 30 days of continuous employment are entitled to 7 days unpaid for sick leave or family responsibility each year provided they give their employer a medical certificate attesting to the sickness (43.11)

COMPASSIONATE CARE - Employees with at least 30 days of continuous employment are entitled to up to 8 weeks of unpaid leave to care for a family member where a medical certificate attesting that the condition has a significant risk of death within 26 weeks (43.14)

RESERVIST - Unpaid leave is available to employees who are members of the reserves and have been employed for 6 consecutive months for the period necessary to accommodate the period of service (43.18)

CRIME-RELATED CHILD - Employees with at least 30 days of continuous employment are entitled to up to 104 weeks unpaid if the employee is the parent of a child who has died and it is probable, considering the circumstances, that the child died as a result of a crime (43.24(1)). Employees are entitled to leave without pay for up to 52 weeks if they are the parent of a child who has disappeared and it is probable that the child has disappeared as a result of a crime (43.24(2))

CRITICALLY ILL CHILD - Employees with at least 30 days of continuous employment are entitled to a leave of absence from employment without pay for up to 37 weeks to provide care or support to a critically ill child where a physician issues a certificate attesting to the illness (43.29)
TERMINATION/SEVERANCE Employees shall not be terminated without written notice of termination from their employer (52(1)), unless: the employee has refused to obey lawful instruction, the employee has been paid wages equal to normal wages covering the period of notice, the employee is laid off for a period not exceeding one week, the employee has reached the age of retirement, or several other less notable exceptions (53)

Period of notice required is one week where the employee has been continuously employed for at least 3 months but less than two years, 2 weeks if between 2 and 5 years, 3 weeks if between 5 and 10 years, 4 weeks if between 10 and 15 years, and 6 weeks if over 15 years (55)
EXEMPTIONS Weekly day of rest (22) does not apply to employees subject to a collective agreement within the Labour Relations Act or the Fishing Industry Collective Bargaining Act, an employee employed in a remote area and who gives notice to his or her employer, or crew members of a ferry boat (REG 6)

Rest periods (24) do not apply to crew members of a ferry boat, employees subject to a collective agreement within the Labour Relations Act or the Fishing Industry Collective Bargaining Act or those who work alone and in circumstances where it is impracticable to take a rest period (REG 7)

Overtime wages (25) do not apply to persons employed in the planting, cultivating and harvesting of farm produce, the raising of livestock or working as a live-in housekeeper or babysitter who has entitlements to overtime (REG 9(6))
This document is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. You should not act or rely on any information in this document without first seeking legal advice. This material is intended for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have any specific questions on any legal matter, you should consult a professional legal services provider.

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