Matthew A. Fisher
Matthew A. Fisher is a partner at Lecker & Associates and a leading employment lawyer in Toronto. He joined Lecker & Associates in 2008 where he continues to provide employment law services exclusively for employees. In 2016, he became a partner in the firm, joining Bram Lecker in leading the firm’s team of Toronto employment lawyers and support staff.
Representing clients in a wide variety of employment law matters, Matthew has considerable expertise in areas including wrongful dismissal, constructive dismissal, job layoffs, negotiating severance packages for employees, and resolving toxic workplace conflicts that often arise between employees and their employers.
In 2014, Matthew successfully argued for the Plaintiff in Felice v. Cardinal Health Canada where a new benchmark was set for the notice periods for short-service executives and senior managers. After being employed for only 19 months, the Plaintiff was awarded 12 months ofnotice by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. The decision is frequently cited by employment lawyers representing short-service senior executives.
Matthew has successfully argued a number of leading and precedent-setting employment law cases. In 2016, Matthew was Plaintiff’s counsel in the highly publicized Court of Appeal case of Keenan v. Canac Kitchens. The decision upheld the award of 26 months of notice that was secured by Lecker & Associates at trial. The Plaintiffs were two workers who had been treated as “independent contractors” and terminated without notice or severance. The decision represented the highest award ever upheld for a “dependant contractor” in Ontario and was profiled in a front-page article in the Toronto Star. The decision was hailed by Law Times as one of the Top Cases of 2016, and was the only case to make the list that was not heard by the Supreme Court of Canada. In 2017, reacting to the changing legal landscape, the Government of Ontario introduced the first major revision to the Employment Standards Act since 2002, including penalties for the misclassification of employees as contractors.
Matthew Fisher’s Practice
Matthew Fisher’s practice includes numerous matters before the Ontario Court of Appeal, Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, Ontario Labour Relations Board, and Canada Labour Code Adjudication Board.
Many of Matthew’s cases have been referred to in noted employment law textbooks and have been profiled by the Toronto Star, National Post, Toronto Sun, Metro News, CBC News, Global News, Lawyers Weekly, Canadian Employment Law Today, Law Times, and Canadian HR Reporter. He is regularly contacted by the media for commentary related to employment law in Ontario.
With many years of employment law experience, Matthew has had the opportunity to participate in legal education for lawyers and law students. He has guest lectured on employment litigation at Western Law, and was invited to present a paper at the Law Society of Upper Canada’s annual Six Minute Employment Lawyer seminar series.
Matthew earned his B.A. in Political Science and LL.B. (Bachelor of Laws) from the University of Western Ontario.
What our clients say about us
When I needed employment law advice, the names of two law firms were given to me one of which was Lecker & Associates. Both were highly regarded and I initially engaged the other. Not long into the process, however, I wasn’t feeling supported by the law firm or confident in their handling of my case and I called Lecker & Associates. I was fortunate to speak to Matthew Fisher. From that very first phone conversation I felt that Matthew had the knowledge and experience to make sure I was treated fairly. Matthew was extremely patient and made sure I understood the process and both he and his assistant Eslita, kept me informed throughout. I’m truly grateful to Matthew for handling my case and I am confident that the outcome was the absolute best it could be. I would recommend Lecker & Associates and Matthew Fisher specifically to anyone needing legal advice and support in an employment matter.
After I was laid off I went to a law firm that told me, after charging me $450 up front and a short consult that nothing could be done and I had no case. I decided to call Lecker & Associates to get a 2nd opinion. I sent in my details and was called immediately by Matthew Fisher. He explained to me that I had a great case and he went through all the details of filing suit and the entire process in a calm manner. Matthew and staff guided me throughout the process and a settlement was received from my former employer, one that I would not have gotten had I listened to the first lawyer I met. I would recommend that you call Lecker & Associates if you have been let go from your job, even if you’ve consulted another law firm. The difference between a good lawyer and one that is not so good, is whether they can see details where other lawyers do not and this can result in massively different outcomes, as I experienced first hand. Great job Matthew, Eslita, Dora & team!
I cannot say enough good things about Lecker & Associates. They have represented me, my wife and my brother, as well as many friends and colleagues, and in every instance have delivered exceptional service, advice and results. Matthew Fisher is THE MAN when it comes to negotiating more favourable severance outcomes, and the team of legal assistants at Lecker & Associates are top-notch professionals. Great communication, great interactions. They boiled the whole thing down to help me understand my rights and obligations, as well as setting expectations with me as to how things would proceed. I was extremely stressed, and one meeting with Matthew instantly relieved my worries. He exudes professionalism and confidence. Immensely pleased with the process and the results. Much thanks to Matthew Fisher and the team at Lecker & Associates.
Let me begin with “I wish I wasn’t only limited to 5 stars, lol”. Heading into work one beautiful and sunny Friday morning, little did I know that this was going to be the last day of my long and illustrious career of 20+ years. Suddenly I was in deep unchartered waters. I was confused, lost, vulnerable, scared….. Sound familiar?! Though my case was not complex, both my credibility and a substantial sum of money were at stake. I knew I needed a highly skilled legal team, credible amongst their peers, skilled in negotiating, experienced in litigation, with a successful track record and even some hard fought lost battles they had drawn learnings from. With a combination of research, networking, and perhaps some luck, I found my team at Lecker & Associations. But little did I know that they were much more than that. Matthew and Eslita are a thorough, diligent, knowledgeable, grounded, and articulate formidable team. Eslita is the warm, caring, highly efficient, always smiling glue of this legal team. And Matthew is a master strategist, a true professional, a bulldog of a negotiator, never wavering in his trust or conviction for your rights and the law. As I move forward, excited about new beginnings and possibilities, I always recognized how fortunate I was to have had Matthew and Eslita in my corner. This is the team I will refer my friends and family to (though I hope I won’t have to!).
Matthew Fisher from Lecker, recommended by a trusted friend, was excellent. Everything from timing to settlement went extremely well. They answered all my questions along the way and provided valuable advice on the situations that arose. I would definitely recommend their services to anyone in a similar situation.
I give the absolute highest marks on this law firm. Matthew Fisher is an expert and genius at labour law with a relentless passion to achieve the best outcome for his clients. Complemented by the sincere straightforwardness, integrity and professionalism of Mathew and the staff (Eslita & Dora), one cannot error with this firm!
I met with Matthew for a detailed conversation and although we did not end up working together, Matthew left me with the best impression of all the atternies I’ve consulted with.
I was very satisfied with the support and results I received from Matthew Fisher, and his team member, Eslita. Details and potential outcomes were explained thoroughly and with proper guidance, and expectations were set reasonably. Their interests were aligned with mine – to find an equitable solution to an “employment liberation” and be able to move on to my chapter. I would recommend Matthew to anyone in a similar situation.
Chambers v. Global Traffic Technologies Canada Inc. ONSC 2000 (CanLII)
Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Mar 22, 2018
Acted successfully on behalf of a General Manager with 2.5 years of service who was awarded 9 months of pay in lieu of notice, along with bonus for both the period worked and the entire notice period.
King v. 1416088 Ontario Ltd. (Danbury Industrial), 2015 ONCA 312
Court of Appeal for Ontario
April 30, 2015
The decision by the Superior Court of Justice in King v. 1416088 Ontario Ltd. was upheld by the Court of Appeal for Ontario in a unanimous ruling. The Plaintiff’s entitlement to 24 months of notice and a lifetime pension against all Defendants was upheld, including against a Defendant that was not operating at the time of the Plaintiff’s dismissal.
Keenan v. Canac Kitchens, 2015 ONSC 1055
Ontario Superior Court of Justice
January 21, 2015
Marilyn and Lawrence Keenan worked 26 and 33 years respectively for Canac Kitchens. While they worked full time, Canac viewed them as “independent contractors” because they were paid by invoice rather than salary and had “subcontractors” reporting to them. They were terminated without any notice of severance when Canac wound down its operations in Canada.
The Court accepted the Plaintiff’s submissions and awarded the Keenans 26 months of pay in lieu of notice, the highest award ever to a “dependent contractor”.
Felice v. Cardinal Health Canada Inc., 2014 ONSC 1190
Ontario Superior Court of Justice
March 20, 2014
The Plaintiff worked for the Defendant and its predecessor for a total period of 18 months, and at the time of the termination of his employment without cause held the position of National Director of Operations. The Court awarded 12 months of notice, despite the employee’s relatively short tenure.
Todd Shapiro v. Corus Entertainment Inc, 2014 CanLII 59597 (CA LA)
Canada Labour Code Adjudication
October 8, 2014
Todd Shapiro, the complainant, alleges he was unjustly dismissed from his position as a radio co-host. The employer, Corus Entertainment Inc., operates a large number of radio and television stations across Canada.
Fasullo v. Investments Hardware Ltd., 2012 ONSC 2809
Ontario Superior Court of Justice
May 10, 2012
Employee was not bound by a restrictive termination clause since he signed it after leaving a previous employer and joining the Defendant based on a verbal contract that did not address termination. It was found that there was no consideration for the written termination clause or the clauses that followed in later contracts.
Macan v. Strongco, 2013 HRTO 841
Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario
May 16, 2013
Employee was dismissed as part of a restructuring. The Human Rights Tribunal found that her medical disability was a factor in the decision and awarded 9 months of backpay and damages for injury to her dignity, feelings, and self respect as a result of the violation of her human rights.
Henderson v. Marquest Asset Management Inc., 2010 CanLII 34120
Ontario Labour Relations Board
June 17, 2010
A mother told that there was no position for her when she returned from maternity leave to her job at a financial company following the recent economic downturn. The OLRB determined that her job did exist and was held by her replacement. She was ordered reinstated with full back-pay.