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Tort Claims

Court denies employee's claim for negligent misrepresentation during the recruiting/hiring process

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Forestry

Despite the employee's sympathetic facts in Lesage v. Canadian Forest Products Ltd.,
2009 BCSC 1427
, the BC Supreme Court denied his claims for (1) negligent misrepresentation and (2) constructive dismissal.


The employee started working for Ainsworth Lumber Company Ltd. ("Ainsworth") in 100 Mile House in 2000. He was a divisional accountant or divisional controller.

In the fall of 2006, a representative from another forestry company, Canfor, who knew the employee, contacted him to advise of an opening at Canfor. Canfor ultimately filled this position with another candidate, but subsequnetly discussed with the employee his interest in a Regional Controller position.

The employee was initially not interested in the position because it required living in Fort Nelson. However, in December 2006, Canfor advised the employee that he could be based in Prince George, and that the position would provide him with accounting responsibility for three of its mills.  read more »

Supreme Court of Canada dismisses application for leave to appeal in negligent investigation case

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

In Brian Fox and Board of Education of School District No. 62 (Sooke) v. Margaret Hildebrand, 2009 CanLII 13443 (S.C.C.), which was issued today, the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed with costs the application for leave from the judgment of the Court of Appeal for BC in 2008 BCCA 434 (November 5, 2008).

The BCCA had ruled in its decision, inter alia, that it was not "plain and obvious" that one employee did not owe another employee a duty of care in the manner in which the first employee investigated allegations of workplace misconduct against the second employee.

Court has jurisdiction over defamation action brought by unionized employee against employer

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Education

The BC Court of Appeal has overturned a lower court decision that held that a public school teacher's defamation action against his principal and school board was a matter that arose under the collective agreement and was thus not within in the court's jurisdiction.


The teacher, while off on a medical leave, attended the school and caused a disturbance that resulted in criminal charges and disciplinary action by the BC College of Teachers. (The College's disciplinary action was subsequently overturned by the court on the basis that the teacher had been incompetent due to his medical condition).

As part of the same court action, the teacher brought the defamation action in relation to comments the principal had allegedly made to a police officer.  read more »

"The Limits of the Application Game - Why Employee Privacy Matters"

Jurisdiction: - Canada/Federal - Ontario

"The Limits of the Application Game - Why Employee Privacy Matters" (2008) is the title of a paper written by Dan Michaluk,

Mr. Michaluk is a lawyer at Hicks Morley Hamilton Stewart Storie LLP in Ontario.

Although, as Mr. Michaluk states, there is an apparent privacy rights "gap" in Ontario employment law, he uses the paper to: describe the various sources of employee privacy rights in five parts:

  1. rights in privacy statutes;
  2. human rights and privacy statutes;
  3. privacy regulation in other statutes;
  4. contractual privacy rights; and
  5. the privacy tort.

His intent in writing the paper is to:

...illustrate that privacy rights are rooted in many sources, that there are risks of newly-developing sources of employee privacy rights and, overall, that employee privacy does matter.

Ontario Court of Appeal refuses to recognize tort of negligent investigation against employer

Jurisdiction: - Ontario

The Ontario Court of Appeal refused to recognize the tort of negligent investigation against employer in Correia v. Canac Kitchens, 2008 ONCA 506. You can read a summary of the case in the July 4, 2008 issue of the Lawyer's Weekly found here.