Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Danial Ward Warren operating as Dan’s Taxi has been fined $15,000 for failure to pay money owed to an employee after being ordered to do so by a Ministry of Labour employment standards officer. The order was issued when the company failed to pay an employee minimum wage and other entitlements in the amount of $14,561.
Danial Ward Warren was operating a taxi business in Fergus, Ontario. After investigating an Employment Standard’s claim submitted to the Ministry of Labour, an employment officer issued an order to pay wages in December 2015 to the employer. The employment standards officer determined that the employer failed to pay minimum wage and termination pay, resulting in a contravention of the Employment Standards Act.
After a trial, the court convicted Danial Ward Warren of failing to comply with the employment standards officer’s order.
In addition to the fine, the court also ordered Danial Ward Warren to pay the wages owing to the employee.
The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Walter W. Rojek in Guelph on April 27, 2016.
The law(s) in contravention,
Danial Ward Warren was found guilty of a violation of the Ontario Employment Standards Act section 103, subsection 8 which states,
“Every employer against whom an order is issued under this section shall comply with it according to its terms.”
Danial Ward Warren was also found guilty of a violation of the Ontario Employment Standards Act, section 132 which states,
“A person who contravenes this Act or the regulations or fails to comply with an order, direction or other requirement under this Act or the regulations is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable,
(a) if the person is an individual, to a fine of not more than $50,000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than 12 months or to both;
(b) subject to clause (c), if the person is a corporation, to a fine of not more than $100,000; and
(c) if the person is a corporation that has previously been convicted of an offence under this Act or a predecessor to it,
(i) if the person has one previous conviction, to a fine of not more than $250,000, and
(ii) if the person has more than one previous conviction, to a fine of not more than $500,000.”
All I can think of is that old saying, “Pay me now or pay me later.” It looks like Danial did not read the fine print in his role of an employer and he, obviously did not read the sections regarding the employer’s responsibilities. Too bad too. The fines would be well above the required payments and will continue to grow until paid.
Ensure your workplace is a safe place. Please follow the information in the Employment Standards Act, the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and the appropriate sector regulations you are a part of. The fines can only go up as the employer fails to heed warnings.
Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.