Bill 66, Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act, 2018, has received royal assent and is now law. The introduction of Bill 66 was the subject of our December 2018 Blakes Bulletin: Ontario Looks to Roll out More Changes to Workplace Legislation with Bill 66. Below is an overview of the changes that Bill 66 makes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA).
Eliminating the Need for Approval of the Director of Employment Standards: Bill 66 eliminates the requirement for employers to obtain approval from the Director of Employment Standards in order to (i) enter into agreements to allow employees to work weekly hours in excess of 48 hours, and (ii) enter into overtime averaging agreements.
Overtime Averaging Agreements: Bill 66 allows employers to enter into agreements with employees to average hours of work for periods of up to four weeks in order to determine entitlement to overtime pay. As noted above, approval from the Director of Employment Standards will not be required. Overtime averaging agreements will need to specify a start date and an expiry date. For non-unionized employees, the expiry date will need to be within two years of the start date. For unionized employees, the agreement will need to expire no later than the date on which a subsequent collective bargaining agreement comes into operation. Existing overtime averaging agreements that have been approved will continue to be valid until they are revoked or expire.
ESA Poster: Bill 66 removes the obligation for employers to post in the workplace a poster setting out information about the ESA and its Regulations. Employers will continue to be required to provide a copy of the poster with this information to each of their employees.