Employment standards for contractors

Hours, work limits for independent contractors
By Tim Mitchell
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 04/17/2013

Question: In a contract with an independent contractor, are there any employment standards considerations regarding hours of work? Is it acceptable for the employment contract to simply state what amount of work is required to be completed, regardless of how many hours it takes the contractor to do it — such as 70 hours a week, for example — without overtime pay?

Answer: Employment standards legislation applies to individuals who are in an employment relationship with the entity to whom they provide services, although even certain categories of employees are typically exempted in whole or in part from its operation. The purpose of such legislation is to set minimum standards that employees, because of their presumed unequal bargaining position vis-à-vis their employers, would be unable to negotiate for themselves.