By Peter VanVliet Snell

In Canada, the discussion of the separation of a franchisor from its franchisees’ local employment decisions has surfaced in a number of recent cases. Among these, some cases have questioned which of the two entities should share legal liability with regard to any human rights complaints, wrongful dismissals, union claims and/or relevant employment standards issues.

Nevertheless, even when franchisees make employment decisions the franchisor does not agree with, the franchisor will generally not step in to reverse these decisions, for fear that any such actions, whether direct or indirect, could have the unintended consequence of creating a joint employer relationship.