Two weeks ago, we reported on the Ontario Government’s introduction of Bill 177, Stronger, Fairer Ontario Act (Budget Measures), 2017, which contained several amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Ontario) (“OHSA“). On December 14, 2017, the Bill received Royal Assent and came into force that same day.
Under the new law, the maximum fines per conviction under OHSA are now $1.5 million for corporations and $100,000 for individuals. Individuals may also be subject to up to 12 months of jail time. In addition, Ministry of Labour prosecutors will now have greater flexibility in the number of alleged violations (or “counts”) they include when laying charges. Finally, the revisions provide for a one (1) year limitation period for bringing charges from the date the Ministry of Labour Inspector becomes aware of an alleged offence, rather than from the date that the alleged offence occurred.