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Pay Equity Act (S.C. 2018, c. 27, s. 416)

Full Document:  

Act current to 2021-11-17 and last amended on 2021-08-31. Previous Versions

PART 4General Provisions — Pay Equity Plans (continued)

Transfers or Leases

Marginal note:Federal private sector — transfer or lease

 If a federal work, undertaking or business, as defined in section 2 of the Canada Labour Code, or any part of it — or a corporation established to perform any duty or function on behalf of the Government of Canada, or any part of the corporation, other than a corporation named in Schedule IV or V of the Financial Administration Act — is leased or transferred by sale, merger or other­wise from one employer, in this section referred to as the “former employer”, to another employer, in this section referred to as the “new employer”, and the former employer had posted, or is deemed to be the employer that had posted, as the case may be, a pay equity plan in accordance with section 55, subsection 57(2), section 83 or subsection 85(2),

  • (a) the new employer is deemed to be the employer that posted the pay equity plan;

  • (b) the new employer is liable for the former employer’s obligations under this Act that arose as a result of the posting of the pay equity plan; and

  • (c) if the new employer was not subject to this Act immediately before the day of the transfer or lease, it becomes subject to this Act on that day.

Marginal note:Federal private sector — re-tendering

 If, by reason of a contract being awarded through a re-tendering process, an employer, in this section referred to as the “new employer”, becomes responsible for the carrying out or the operation of a federal work, undertaking or business, as defined in section 2 of the Canada Labour Code, or any part of it, that was previously carried out or operated by another employer, in this section referred to as the “former employer”, and the former employer had posted, or is deemed to be the employer that had posted, as the case may be, a pay equity plan in accordance with section 55, subsection 57(2), section 83 or subsection 85(2),

  • (a) the new employer is deemed to be the employer that posted the pay equity plan;

  • (b) the new employer is liable for the former employer’s obligations under this Act that arose as a result of the posting of the pay equity plan; and

  • (c) if the new employer was not subject to this Act immediately before the day on which the contract becomes effective, it becomes subject to this Act on that day.

Marginal note:Provincial business

  •  (1) If, after the coming into force of this section, a person that carries out or operates a provincial business becomes an employer referred to in any of paragraphs 3(2)(e) to (i), and the person was, while carrying out or operating the provincial business, required to establish a pay equity plan under the laws of a province,

    • (a) for the purpose of calculating, under subparagraph 9(a)(ii) or (b)(ii), the average of the number of the employer’s employees in the calendar year in which the person becomes an employer, the persons who were employed in the provincial business in that calendar year are deemed to have been employees of that employer in that calendar year; and

    • (b) if the employer becomes subject to this Act on a day that is on or after the day that is 18 months after the date on which this section comes into force, the employer must, despite subsection 55(1), post the final version of the pay equity plan no later than the day that is 18 months after the date on which the employer became subject to this Act.

  • Marginal note:Definition of provincial business

    (2) In subsection (1), provincial business means a work, undertaking or business, or any part of a work, undertaking or business that is subject to the employment laws of a province.

Collective Agreements

Marginal note:Effect on collective agreements

 In the event of an inconsistency between the version of a pay equity plan most recently posted in accordance with section 55, 57, 83 or 85 or paragraph 94(1)(b), as the case may be, and any collective agreement governing the employees to whom the pay equity plan relates, that pay equity plan prevails to the extent of the inconsistency. Any increase in compensation payable by an employer to employees under this Act is deemed to be incorporated into and form part of the collective agreements governing those employees.

Implementation

Marginal note:90-day period

 Despite any other provision of this Act, an employer may not be the subject of a complaint under this Act, or be served with a notice of violation under this Act, where the subject-matter of the complaint or alleged violation is the failure of the employer to pay the amount of any increase in compensation — or any lump sum — payable under this Act within the first 90 days after the day on which that amount is payable.

Interest

Marginal note:Failure to pay amount due

  •  (1) If an employer fails to pay an amount to an employee when required under section 61, 62 or 88, as the case may be, the employer must pay to the employee interest on the amount. The interest is to be calculated and compounded daily on the amount, at the rate that is prescribed by regulation or calculated in a manner that is prescribed by regulation, for the period beginning on the first day after the day on which the amount was required to be paid and ending on the day on which the amount is paid.

  • Marginal note:Interest rate if none prescribed

    (2) If no regulations are made for the purpose of subsection (1), the rate of interest is the rate per annum that is the aggregate of 2% per annum and the bank rate in effect on the day in respect of which the interest is calculated.

Prohibitions

Marginal note:Reduction of compensation

 An employer must not reduce the compensation payable to any of its employees in order to achieve pay equity.

Marginal note:Obstruction

 It is prohibited to obstruct, by act or omission, the Pay Equity Commissioner or his or her delegate while they are engaged in the exercise of powers or the performance of duties or functions under this Act.

Marginal note:False or misleading statements — Pay Equity Commissioner

 It is prohibited to knowingly make any false or misleading statement verbally or in writing to the Pay Equity Commissioner, or to his or her delegate, while they are engaged in the exercise of powers or the performance of duties or functions under this Act.

Marginal note:False or misleading statements — records, reports, etc.

 It is prohibited for any person to knowingly make, or participate in, assent to or acquiesce in the making of a false or misleading statement in any record, report, electronic data or other document that the person is required to prepare, retain or provide under this Act.

Marginal note:Reprisal by employer

 No employer and no person acting on an employer’s behalf is to take reprisal against a person, including by refusing to employ or to continue to employ the person, or suspending or laying off the person or otherwise discriminating against the person with respect to employment, pay or any other term of employment or intimidating, threatening or disciplining the person, because the person has

  • (a) testified or otherwise participated, or may testify or otherwise participate, in a proceeding under this Act;

  • (b) filed a complaint or exercised any right under this Act; or

  • (c) taken an action in compliance with this Act or refused to take an action that would have resulted in non-compliance with this Act.

Marginal note:Reprisal by bargaining agent

 No bargaining agent or person acting on behalf of a bargaining agent is to take reprisal against a person, including by

  • (a) taking disciplinary action against or imposing any form of penalty on the person by applying to that person in a discriminatory manner the standards of discipline of the bargaining agent, because that person

    • (i) has testified or otherwise participated, or may testify or otherwise participate, in a proceeding under this Act,

    • (ii) has filed a complaint or exercised any right under this Act, or

    • (iii) has taken an action in compliance with this Act or refused to take an action that would have resulted in non-compliance with this Act;

  • (b) expelling or suspending the person from membership in the trade union or employee organization or taking disciplinary action against or imposing any form of penalty on the person by reason of that person having refused to perform an act that is contrary to this Act; or

  • (c) discriminating against the person with respect to employment, a term of employment or membership in a trade union or employee organization, or intimidating or coercing the person or imposing a financial or other penalty on the person, because that person

    • (i) has testified or otherwise participated, or may testify or otherwise participate, in a proceeding under this Act,

    • (ii) has filed a complaint or exercised any right under this Act, or

    • (iii) has taken an action in compliance with this Act or refused to take an action that would have resulted in non-compliance with this Act.

PART 5Pay Equity Commissioner

Pay Equity Commissioner’s Role

Marginal note:Mandate — Pay Equity Commissioner

  •  (1) The Pay Equity Commissioner’s mandate is to

    • (a) ensure the administration and enforcement of this Act;

    • (b) assist persons in understanding their rights and obligations under this Act; and

    • (c) facilitate the resolution of disputes relating to pay equity.

  • Marginal note:Duties

    (2) In carrying out his or her mandate, the Pay Equity Commissioner must

    • (a) monitor the implementation of this Act, including the establishment and updating of pay equity plans;

    • (b) offer assistance to employers, employees and bargaining agents in relation to pay equity matters and applications, including in relation to complaints, objections and disputes, and decide any matter or application over which he or she has jurisdiction under this Act;

    • (c) develop tools to promote compliance with this Act;

    • (d) educate and inform employers, employees and bargaining agents of their rights and obligations under this Act;

    • (e) undertake and publish research related to pay equity matters; and

    • (f) maintain close liaison with similar bodies or authorities in the provinces in order to coordinate efforts when appropriate.

Marginal note:Delegation

  •  (1) The Pay Equity Commissioner may delegate, subject to any restrictions or limitations that he or she may specify, any of his or her powers, duties and functions under this Act — other than those set out in sections 104, 114, 115 and 117 and the power to delegate under this section — to any person or class of persons other than the Chief Commissioner of the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

  • Marginal note:Certificate of delegation

    (2) Each person to whom powers, duties or functions are delegated under subsection (1) must be provided with a certificate of delegation in the form established by the Pay Equity Commissioner and that person must, when exercising those powers or performing those duties or functions, produce the certificate to any person who asks to see it.

Authorizations by Pay Equity Commissioner

Marginal note:Recognition of group as single employer

  •  (1) On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 4(1), the Pay Equity Commissioner may recognize the group as a single employer if he or she is of the opinion that the employers

    • (a) are part of the same industry;

    • (b) have similar compensation practices; and

    • (c) have positions with similar duties and responsibilities.

  • Marginal note:Choice of date

    (2) If the Pay Equity Commissioner recognizes a group as a single employer under subsection (1), he or she must choose the day on which the group becomes subject to this Act for the purpose of subsection 55(1), and paragraphs 61(1)(b) and 89(2)(b). He or she must choose a day that

    • (a) is after the day on which one of the employers in the group becomes subject to this Act; and

    • (b) is, in his or her opinion, the earliest day that would give the group sufficient time to meet its obligations under this Act.

Marginal note:Authority — multiple pay equity plans

 On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 30(1) or (2) and after giving an opportunity to make representations under subsection 30(4), the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if the application has not been denied under subsection 30(5) and if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances, authorize the establishment of more than one pay equity plan.

Marginal note:Authority — plan without committee

 On receipt of an application referred to in section 25, 26, 73 or 74, the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances and in accordance with any regulations made under paragraph 181(1)(o), authorize the establishment or update, as the case may be, of a pay equity plan without a pay equity committee.

Marginal note:Authority — different committee membership

 On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 19(3), section 27, subsection 67(6) or 68(6) or section 75, the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances and in accordance with any regulations made under paragraph 181(1)(o), authorize the establishment or continuation, as the case may be, of a pay equity committee that does not comply with the requirements set out in any of paragraphs 19(1)(a), (b), (d) and (e).

Marginal note:Authority — Committee cannot perform work

 On receipt of an application referred to in section 28, 29, 76 or 77, the Pay Equity Commissioner must

  • (a) attempt to assist the pay equity committee in the performance of its work; and

  • (b) if he or she is of the opinion that the pay equity committee is unable to perform its work and that it is appropriate in the circumstances, authorize the establishment or update, as the case may be, of a pay equity plan without a pay equity committee.

Marginal note:Authority — other compensation comparison method

 On receipt of an application referred to in subparagraph 48(2)(a)(i), the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances, authorize the use of a method for the comparison of compensation that is prescribed by regulation or, if no such method is prescribed or the employer is of the opinion that a method prescribed by regulation cannot be used, the method proposed by the employer.

Marginal note:Authority — extension for posting final plan

  •  (1) On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 57(1), the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances and in accordance with any regulations made under paragraph 181(1)(o), authorize an extension of the period set out in subsection 55(1) or paragraph 94(1)(b), as the case may be, for the posting of a final pay equity plan.

  • Marginal note:Authority — extension for posting final revised plan

    (2) On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 85(1), the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is appropriate in the circumstances and in accordance with any regulations made under paragraph 181(1)(o), authorize an extension of the period set out in subsection 83(1) for the posting of a final version of the revised pay equity plan and the final version of the document referred to in subsection 79(2).

Marginal note:Authority — longer phase-in period

 On receipt of an application referred to in subsection 63(1), the Pay Equity Commissioner may, if he or she is of the opinion that it is justified on the basis that the employer has demonstrated extreme financial hardship, authorize the employer to phase in increases in compensation that are required to be made under a pay equity plan over a longer phase-in period than the one set out in paragraph 61(2)(c) or (d) or 62(4)(e) or (f).

Information and Reports

Marginal note:Provision of information or advice

 The Pay Equity Commissioner may — or, if requested to do so by the Minister, must — provide the Minister with information or advice in respect of systemic or emerging pay equity issues.

Marginal note:Special reports

  •  (1) The Pay Equity Commissioner may — or, if requested to do so by the Minister, must — prepare a report to the Senate and the House of Commons in respect of issues arising from the administration and enforcement of this Act or in respect of systemic or emerging pay equity issues.

  • Marginal note:Transmission of special reports

    (2) As soon as feasible, but in any case within three months after the end of the fiscal year in which the report is prepared, the Pay Equity Commissioner must cause the report to be transmitted to the Speaker of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House of Commons for tabling in those Houses and provide the Minister and the Minister of Justice with a copy of the report.

 
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