A major revision of labour standards

The Act respecting labour standards recently went through a major revision. Changes were made to ensure its evolution in pursuit of the following main objectives:

  • favour family-work-study balance, particularly by improving certain leaves
  • upgrade the protections granted to workers who only have the labour standards regime to govern their working conditions
  • adapt the Act to the new realities of the labour market

On June 12, 2018, juin the National Assembly thus adopted An Act to amend the Act respecting labour standards and other legislative provisions mainly to facilitate family-work balance.

The main changes

Below you will find the main changes made to the labour standards. We invite you to consult the pages proposed as reference for more information on the changes and their effective date, and the standards that have not been amended.

Subject Amendments Former provisions
Victim of domestic violence or sexual violence

An employee who is a victim of domestic violence or sexual violence may be absent from work up to 26 weeks over a 12-month period.

N.A.

Remuneration of days of absence

After 3 months of uninterrupted service, an employee may benefit from 2 days of paid leave per year due to sickness, organ or tissue donation, accident, domestic violence, sexual violence or a crime or to take care of a relative of a person for whom he/she acts as a caregiver.

Before January 1, 2019

N.A.

Learn more about this standard

Subject Amendments Former provisions
Difference in conditions of employment in relation to a pension plan or other employee benefits

Any difference in treatment made solely on the basis of a hiring date, in relation to pension plans or other employee benefits, that affects employees performing the same tasks in the same establishment is also prohibited. However, differences in conditions of employment that existed before the Act came into force on June 12, 2018 remain valid.

An employee who believes he/she is a victim of a prohibited difference in treatment in relation to a pension plan or other employee benefits may file a complaint with the CNESST within 12 months of the time when he/she learned of the distinction.

Before June 12, 2018

N.A.

Wage rates and employment status

An employer may not pay an employee a lower wage rate or reduce the duration of or compensation for his/her annual leave in relation to other employees performing the same tasks in the same establishment, solely on the basis of his/her employment status.

Before January 1, 2019

The proscription was only for employees who usually worked fewer hours per week and earned less than double the minimum wage.

Learn more about this standard

Subject Amendments Former provisions
Student athlete

The Act respecting labour standards does not apply to an athlete whose membership in a sports team is conditional on his/her continued participation in an academic program.

Before June 12, 2018

N.A.

Construction employees and senior managers

The right to two paid days of leave for illness or family obligations does not apply to construction employees and senior managers.

Before June 12, 2018

N.A.

Learn more about this standard

​​​​​​​  ​ 
​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​