Canadian Payroll Reporter

April 2017

Focuses on issues of importance to payroll professionals across Canada. It contains news, case studies, profiles and tracks payroll-related legislation to help employers comply with all the rules and regulations governing their organizations.

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Payroll Reporter Can R Can R adian adian a April 2017 News in Brief pg. 4 Quebec backtracks on eligibility age for tax credit | Union calls for Phoenix contingency fund | Ontario reviewing Fair Wage Policy Ask an expert pg. 5 Are probationary workers entitled to sick days? | Retention bonus versus retiring allowance Know your holiday pay pg. 3 Properly compensating employees for statutory holidays can be tricky, even for the most seasoned payroll professionals Employee or independent contractor? Determination important when complying with standards laws BY SHEILA BRAWN A RECENTLY proposed class-action lawsuit highlights the importance of businesses properly classifying workers as employees or independent contractors under employment standards laws. In January, Toronto-based law firm Samfiru Tu- markin filed a class-action lawsuit in the Ontario Superior Court against Uber Technologies, seek- ing $200 million in damages for Ontario residents who have driven for the ride-sharing service since 2012. The lawsuit claims that the drivers are employ- ees, not independent contractors as Uber classifies them. "Uber drivers are employees in almost every sense, but are incorrectly classified as independent contractors," said Lior Samfiru, a partner at the law firm. "Uber drivers are in fact employees, and are entitled to minimum wage, overtime, vacation pay, see ROUNDUP page 7 PM #40065782 Legislative Roundup Changes in payroll laws and regulations from across Canada see TAXABLE page 6 Credit: Prathan Chorruangsak/Shutterstock Payroll issues focus of CRA review Program audit provides insight into employers' understanding of obligations BY SHEILA BRAWN PAYROLL PRACTITIONERS are more confident calculating tax- able benefits for group term life insurance, accidental death and dis- memberment (AD&D), and gifts and awards than they are for stock options, personal and living expenses, and housing-related benefits. This is one of the findings from a recent review that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) conducted on its Employer Compliance Audit (ECA) Program. The agency says it carried out the evalua- tion to determine how well the program is achieving its mandate of maintaining the integrity of the tax system through employer educa- tion and enforcement. British Columbia Minimum wage going up The general minimum wage rate in British Columbia will increase from $10.85 an hour to $11.35 on Sept. 15, the provincial govern- ment recently announced. The rate hike includes a 20-cent increase, based on British Co- lumbia's 2016 consumer price index (CPI), as well as an extra 30 cents to account for strong economic growth in the province. Last year, the government began indexing minimum wage rates using increases in the province's CPI for the previous year (rounded to the nearest nickel). The minimum wage rate for liquor servers will also go up on Sept. 15 from $9.60 an hour to $10.10. On that date, the government will also increase the minimum see UBER page 2

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