As of July 1st, 2018, changes will come into effect with regards to public holiday pay entitlements for employees in Ontario.
Most commonly, employees have the right to take a public holiday day off and receive public holiday pay. However, if a public holiday falls on a day that is not normally a working day, the employee is entitled to a substitute holiday day off (with pay), or public holiday pay for the skipped holiday (on top of their regular wage).
In 2017, a new law was enacted under the name of the FWBJA (Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act), which updated the formula for public holiday pay to the current state (as of this article’s writing). This particular element of the new law was poorly received because it appeared to be a worse deal for employees and employers alike.
The Ministry of Labour has now taken action to remedy the situation. The new formula, as of July 1st, 2018, will be as follows: Sum all wages earned over the preceding four weeks (prior to the public holiday, including vacation pay). Then divide this figure by 20.
This is a significant update from the old formula, which involved a more complicated set of steps taking into account your company's custom pay period, specific sets of days worked by each given employee and their respective wage rate over that custom period.
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