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Notable Cases - Bram A. Lecker

Keenan v. Canac Kitchens, 2015, 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 wrongfully terminated when Canac wound down its operations in Canada and were awarded the highest ever settlement in Ontario for termination without severance.

Luz v. Moore Business Communication Services, (Ont. Gen. Div. 1995) and Bullen v. Procter & Redfern Ltd., 1996 CanLII 8135 (ON SC), Bram was the first lawyer in Ontario to obtain summary judgment in a private employment wrongful dismissal action.

Martellacci v. CFCINX Ltd., 1997 CanLII 12327 (ON SC), established the principle that temporary “lay-offs” must be treated as terminations.

Randhawa v. Everest & Jennings Canadian Ltd., 1996 CanLII 8157 (ON SC), established principle that Employers could not interfere with Employment Insurance process.

Youkhanna v. Spina’s Steel Workers Co., 2001 CanLII 28316 (ON SC), established principal that Employers could not interfere with Employees rights to claim for WSIA injury.1

Hilton v. Norampac Inc., 2003 CanLII 11626 (ON CA), established principle that Employee could refuse material change in working conditions that adversely affected parenting obligation. This case was decided by the Ontario Court of Appeal in favour of the employee, a decision which was upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada in its decision to deny the employer’s request for leave to appeal.

Boland v. APV Canada Inc., 2005 CanLII 3384 (ON SCDC), the Divisional Court held that employees could not be forced to stay on with the new purchasers of a business when it was purchased and would not forfeit their rights to severance if they left.

Mahesuram v. Canac Kitchens Ltd. a Division of Kohler Canada, 2009 CanLII 1369 (ON SC), was one of six decisions against a large multi-national corporation that attempted to withhold pay in lieu of reasonable notice to its long-serving Canadian employees when it shut down the company’s Canadian operations.

Verma v. RBC – Article – Canadian Employment Law Today (Verma v. Royal Bank of Canada), 2012, where a bank employee was reinstated to his position with full back-pay and full legal costs payable by the employer after his employment was terminated for discriminatory and unjust reasons.