Class Actions

Scotia Bank Vacation Pay Class Action —

This proposed class action is brought against the Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank) on behalf of a proposed class of all Scotiabank employees who were not compensated for unused vacation days, or whose vacation and holiday pay were systemically miscalculated in a manner contrary to the Canada Labour Code, between December 12, 2020 until the date that the court certifies the action as a class action.

Summary of the Case

Scotiabank is a federally-regulated employer. The Canada Labour Code governs minimum employment standards for Scotiabank’s employees. Scotiabank’s vacation policy (which is incorporated into its employment contracts) guarantees that employees will receive the minimum vacation and holiday pay entitlements set out in the Code.

This proposed class action is brought by the Plaintiff on behalf of all persons who were employed by the Bank of Nova Scotia in Canada, excluding officers, directors, and C-suite executives, during the Class Period, where the Class Period is from December 12, 2020 until the date of certification of this action.

The claim alleges that Scotiabank’s vacation policy creates a systemic barrier for employees to receive their minimum vacation entitlements. The class action involves two primary claims:

First, Scotiabank fails to compensate employees for unused vacation days, in violation of their employment contracts and the requirements of the Canada Labour Code. Scotiabank has an aggressive “use it or lose it” policy. This means that employees lose their accrued vacation days if they do not use them by October 31 of the following year. This encourages employees either to forgo some of their vacation days, or to book vacation days that they will ultimately work through. Scotiabank does not adequately track employees’ unused vacation days or the vacation days on which employees end up working, and Scotiabank does not compensate employees who work through their scheduled vacations.

Scotiabank’s communicated vacation policy misleads employees as to their vacation entitlements. The “use it or lose it” policy encourages the misperception that vacation days will expire without advising employees of their right to a vacation pay adjustment for unused vacation days.

Second, Scotiabank fails to calculate vacation pay and holiday pay on the basis of all of an employee’s wages, including bonuses. A large number of Scotiabank employees receive variable compensation in addition to their base salary. This includes performance bonuses and incentive pay. The Canada Labour Code requires that vacation and holiday pay be calculated based on each employee’s “wages”, as defined in the Code. Variable compensation forms part of these employees’ wages, but Scotiabank improperly excludes this portion of its employees’ wages from its vacation and holiday pay calculations.

The claim alleges that the manner in which Scotiabank applies is vacation policy is a breach of its employment contracts, and a breach of its common law and statutory duties to employees. As a result of these breaches, Scotiabank has been unjustly enriched at the expense of its employees.

The Plaintiff seeks to recover damages for the Class for the minimum vacation entitlements that Class members did not receive.

Status of the Proceedings

The claim was commenced by Statement of Claim on December 14, 2022.

Did you receive less than your minimum vacation entitlements during your employment at Scotiabank?

If so, we would like to hear from you. Please email reception@waddellphillips.ca re: “Scotiabank Vacation Entitlements Class Action”, or fill in the form at the “Contact Us” link, below.

Summary of the Case

Scotiabank is a federally-regulated employer. The Canada Labour Code governs minimum employment standards for Scotiabank’s employees. Scotiabank’s vacation policy (which is incorporated into its employment contracts) guarantees that employees will receive the minimum vacation and holiday pay entitlements set out in the Code.

This proposed class action is brought by the Plaintiff on behalf of all persons who were employed by the Bank of Nova Scotia in Canada, excluding officers, directors, and C-suite executives, during the Class Period, where the Class Period is from December 12, 2020 until the date of certification of this action.

The claim alleges that Scotiabank’s vacation policy creates a systemic barrier for employees to receive their minimum vacation entitlements. The class action involves two primary claims:

First, Scotiabank fails to compensate employees for unused vacation days, in violation of their employment contracts and the requirements of the Canada Labour Code. Scotiabank has an aggressive “use it or lose it” policy. This means that employees lose their accrued vacation days if they do not use them by October 31 of the following year. This encourages employees either to forgo some of their vacation days, or to book vacation days that they will ultimately work through. Scotiabank does not adequately track employees’ unused vacation days or the vacation days on which employees end up working, and Scotiabank does not compensate employees who work through their scheduled vacations.

Scotiabank’s communicated vacation policy misleads employees as to their vacation entitlements. The “use it or lose it” policy encourages the misperception that vacation days will expire without advising employees of their right to a vacation pay adjustment for unused vacation days.

Second, Scotiabank fails to calculate vacation pay and holiday pay on the basis of all of an employee’s wages, including bonuses. A large number of Scotiabank employees receive variable compensation in addition to their base salary. This includes performance bonuses and incentive pay. The Canada Labour Code requires that vacation and holiday pay be calculated based on each employee’s “wages”, as defined in the Code. Variable compensation forms part of these employees’ wages, but Scotiabank improperly excludes this portion of its employees’ wages from its vacation and holiday pay calculations.

The claim alleges that the manner in which Scotiabank applies is vacation policy is a breach of its employment contracts, and a breach of its common law and statutory duties to employees. As a result of these breaches, Scotiabank has been unjustly enriched at the expense of its employees.

The Plaintiff seeks to recover damages for the Class for the minimum vacation entitlements that Class members did not receive.

Status of the Proceedings

The claim was commenced by Statement of Claim on December 14, 2022.

Did you receive less than your minimum vacation entitlements during your employment at Scotiabank?

If so, we would like to hear from you. Please email reception@waddellphillips.ca re: “Scotiabank Vacation Entitlements Class Action”, or fill in the form at the “Contact Us” link, below.

Updates about this proposed class action will be posted as they become available.

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