Act respecting labour standards Chapter IV - Larbour standards (Section 39.1 to 97)
Chapter IV - Larbour standards (Section 39.1 to 97)
Division VII - Miscellaneous other labour standards (Section 85 to 87)
Where an employer requires the use of material, equipment, raw materials or merchandise in the performance of a contract, the employer must furnish them free of charge to an employee who is paid the minimum wage.
The employer cannot require an amount of money from an employee for the purchase, use or maintenance of material, equipment, raw materials or merchandise if the payment would cause the employee to receive less than the minimum wage.
The employer cannot require an amount of money from an employee to pay for expenses related to the operations and mandatory employment-related costs of the enterprise.
2002, c. 80, s. 51.
The employee is paid the minimum wage
The employer must provide free of charge, the material, equipment, raw materials or merchandise that the employee is required to use in the performance of his contract of employment.
The employee is paid more than the minimum wage
An employer may require an amount of money for the purchase of material, equipment, raw materials or merchandise that the employee is required to use for the performance of his contract of employment, but the employee must, nevertheless, receive at least the minimum wage after having paid these expenses.
However, it is important to emphasize that the employer does not have to reimburse the employee when he already owns the equipment necessary for work at the time of hiring. For example, if an employee must use his toolbox for the purposes of his work, the employer will have to reimburse him for the subsequent usage and maintenance charges if the result of these expenses is to cause the employee to receive less than the minimum wage.
If the employer makes a deduction from the pay to collect the costs of material or equipment, he will have to have the employee sign a written authorization (see the interpretation of sections 49 and 85 ALS).
Expenses related to operations and employment-related costs
It is forbidden to require from an employee an amount of money to pay expenses related to operations (operating expenses) and the employment-related costs of the employer’s undertaking, whatever the employee’s wages.
The expenses related to operations may be defined as the costs inherent to the proper and smooth operation of the undertaking. For example, the charges related to a debit or credit card are assimilated with such expenses related to operations.
Employment-related costs are those that are exclusively charged to the employer. They make up, among others, the amounts remitted to the government. Contributions such as those paid to the Commission de la santé et sécurité au travail (CSST) and to the Commission des normes du travail (CNT) are considered employment-related costs.