A List of Basic Employment Rights You May Not Know About


In the workforce, everyone has rights. Employee rights are the general ethical entitlements that an employee needs to have or do anything related to work to be treated fairly. These rights, however, differ based on your working position, such as whether you are a freelancer or an employee.

Employees are workers, but workers are not always employees. An employee has all of the rights and obligations of a worker, plus certain additional rights and responsibilities. Some employee rights may require you to be employed for a minimum, continuous amount of time before being eligible for them.

Here is our list of basic employment laws that everyone should know about:

You Can Access a Copy of Your Personnel File

Most workers, including former employees, have the right to see and get a copy of their personnel files to learn what information is contained in their files about them and their job performance. Your employer is required to enable you to see and copy your file within a “reasonable” length of time after you request it. If you disagree with part of the material in the file, you can request that your papers be added to your personnel file. Most government employees have comparable rights under various legislation.

The Right to Keep Copies of Signed Papers

How many of you recall signing a stack of documents (without reading them, of course) when you first started your job? You may have committed not to work for a competing company, not speak with the firm’s clients and vendors, or quit the company before the end of a year or two.

Whether you are leaving the firm or want to stay, duplicate everything you sign, and it is your right to have copies of these materials. It provides both parties with the assurance that they are entirely aware of their duties and have agreed to abide by the given terms and conditions.

We recommend checking in with a lawyer, such as the employment lawyer Toronto before signing and submitting any work-related documents to your potential employer.

The Right to be Exempted of Sexual Harassment

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention) Act requires businesses to safeguard their workers, particularly women, at work from sexual harassment. In reality, all incidences of sexual harassment, no matter how little, require employers or supervisors to respond immediately and responsibly, according to the law.

So, the next time someone crosses the line, don’t be afraid to complain because of his or her position in the firm.

The Right to Refuse Dangerous Jobs

The law enables you to refuse to conduct unsafe labor if it violates a standard and is dangerous enough that any rational person would believe executing the activity would jeopardize their health or safety. However, before refusing to conduct a risky job, make sure you notify your supervisor about the situation and allow the employer to remedy it.

If the employer fails to repair the hazardous condition and you decide to decline the task, make sure you notify your supervisor, preferably in writing or in front of others, of your decision and that you will return to work as soon as the issue is corrected.

In Case of a Legitimate Mistake…

If you make a legitimate mistake, your employer cannot withhold money from your wages. It is unlawful for an employer to withhold money from an employee’s salary to compensate for an unintentional error, a cash deficit, or a breakage (in other words, a loss caused by a simple mistake or accident). To make a legally permissible deduction, the employer must demonstrate that the error, cash shortfall, or breakage was caused by the employee’s dishonesty, deliberate misconduct, or gross carelessness.

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