Federally regulated employers should be aware that some of the amendments to the Canada Labour Code contained in Bill C-45, summarized in our article in January, 2013 (here), come into force on April 1, 2014.
The most notable amendments coming into force relate to the new statutory time limits for filing complaints and payment orders. There is now a six month time limit for the filing of complaints related to unpaid wages and non-payment of other amounts owing under the Code. If a complaint is successful, orders for the payment of wages are limited to the 12 month period (24 months in the case of vacation pay) preceding the date the complaint was made, the employee was terminated, or the investigation was commenced.
In addition, the powers of inspectors investigating complaints have been clearly delineated. These include assisting the parties to settle complaints, suspending the investigation of a complaint if other measures should be explored, and rejecting a complaint for reasons outlined in the amendments. Transitional provisions state that the amendments do not apply to complaints filed prior to April 1, 2014.