Ex-manager awarded payment for overtime

The Court felt the employer made it too difficult to take time off in lieu of pay
|Canadian Employment Law Today

Matthew Nagel began his employment in April 1994 as a labourer with Del-Air Systems, a steel fabricator. He was promoted to the position of production manager on May 1, 1997. He was responsible for managing the work of two supervisors and 20 to 30 hourly employees each shift.

As a manager Mr. Nagel was not entitled to receive extra wages for overtime work in accordance with company policy. However he was entitled to receive paid time off equal to extra time worked. Del-Air did not keep track of extra hours worked by its managers. It relied upon its managers to keep track of their overtime hours and to take off time in lieu of extra wages.

On Sept. 26, 1998, Mr. Nagel wrote to Del-Air’s chief operating officer (to whom he reported) stating that he believed his salary should be increased in view of his increased responsibilities. The letter did not make reference to the fact that he had been accumulating overtime hours for which he expected compensation, nor did it suggest that he was unable to take off time as compensation for those hours. Del-Air’s response was to increase Mr. Nagel’s monthly salary from $2,900 to $3,200 per month.