Eliminating company credit cards for expenses

By Stuart Rudner
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 05/10/2017

Question: Is it legal to expect employees that once had a corporate credit card to now cover weekly travel expenses on their own personal credit card?

Answer: To begin with, there is no law that would prevent an organization from having a policy of this nature. While some organizations provide corporate credit cards, most do not, and employees incur expenses for which they are reimbursed.

This question relates to a change in practice. Since a change to the terms and conditions of employment can be a constructive dismissal, it is important to assess any risk before imposing such a change. To constitute a constructive dismissal, there must be a substantial change to a fundamental term of the agreement. It is difficult to see how a claim of constructive dismissal based on this set of circumstances could succeed, unless the employee could show that the change would have a substantial negative impact on her. For example, if the employee routinely incurs extensive expenses that she cannot afford to carry until they are reimbursed, that might be cause for concern. Otherwise, it is unlikely that this kind of alteration to the employer's practices will be enough of a change to the terms and conditions of employment to constitute a constructive dismissal.