Prior to these changes, employers could temporarily lay-off their employees for up to three months if no notice with a recall date was provided, or for a period of up to six months if they provided a notice with an expected recall date, before the lay-off became a termination.
The amendments, which are set out in the Canada Labour Standards Regulations, came into effect on June 22, 2020 and temporarily extend these time periods by up to six months:
For employees laid off prior to March 31, 2020, the time period is extended by six months or to December 30, 2020, whichever occurs first.
For employees laid off between March 31, 2020, and September 30, 2020, the time period is extended until December 30, 2020, unless a later recall date was provided in a written notice at the time of the layoff.
For more information, see this news release and backgrounder.