A $360 million class action lawsuit has been launched against CIBC World Markets in Ontario. The action claims the bank failed to compensate investment bankers, financial advisers and stock analysts for overtime work. A similar $600 million law suit was initiated last year on behalf of CIBC bank tellers.
In British Columbia, the Court of Appeal recently concluded that rights set out in the Employment Standards Act (such as overtime pay requirements) cannot be enforced by court action. Instead, employees are required to pursue claims under the Act through the employment standards complaint process administered by the Ministry of Labour. However, this does not prevent employees from seeking to enforce through the courts rights to overtime that are derived from the terms set out in the employee’s contract of employment.
This recent lawsuit serves as a reminder to employers about the importance of ensuring that their policies and practices with respect to overtime comply with employment agreement terms and legislative requirements.