Independent contractor assessments needed after Bill 148 changes


John Devellis HeadshotBusinesses must reassess their relationships with independent contractors after recent changes to Ontario’s workplace laws, Toronto labour and employment lawyer John De Vellis tells

Following the passage of Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017, Ontario employers must prove their independent contractors are not employees subject to the province’s Employment Standards Act (ESA).   

“None of the definitions have changed, but the onus has shifted to the employer to show they haven’t misclassified an employee as an independent contractor,” says De Vellis, a partner with Shibley Righton LLP.

“As a result, businesses are going to have to evaluate their relationships with the people who work for them.”

The province has also promised to hire up to 175 more employment standards inspectors to enforce the new law, which also boosted the minimum wage and requires part-time, temporary, casual and seasonal employees to be paid the same rate as full-time employees when performing the same work.

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