The initial wave of the COVID-19 pandemic forced many employees to work remotely if they were able to do so. As the pandemic has evolved and as businesses have generally re-opened, it has become clear that remote or hybrid-remote work arrangements are going to be here to stay. Employees and employers alike realized some of the advantages to remote working arrangements, such as convenience for employees and reducing office costs for employers, but questions now arise as to whether employees can be working remotely from another province.
First and foremost, an employee should not move to another province to work remotely unless the employer has clearly agreed to a remote work arrangement on a full-time basis. Employers generally have a right to recall employees to work in-person, unless there is an employment agreement between the parties that says otherwise. As such, it would be unwise for an employee to move on a permanent basis unless there is a clear agreement with the employer permitting remote work on a permanent basis as well.
One question that must then be answered is what laws apply to the employee if they work from another province. Employment relationships are generally governed by the provincial laws where the work is to be performed. However, if the work was meant to be performed in Ontario but is now being continued from abroad, Ontario law may still govern the employment relationship. Knowing which provincial employment legislation your employment relationship is regulated by is a critical step in understanding your legal rights in a remote working arrangement from another province.
If you have questions about working remotely from another province and what legislation governs your remote employment, we encourage employees and employers to seek legal advice. We at Whitten & Lublin are happy to provide insight and advice into your specific circumstances. If you are looking for employment lawyers and would like more information about what Whitten & Lublin can do for you, please contact us online or by phone at (416) 640-2667 today.
Author: Nasyr Asmi