Court of Appeal of Quebec

Comité paritaire de l'industrie de l'automobile des régions Lanaudière-Laurentides c. Costco Wholesale Canada Ltd.

500-09-027825-181

Bich, Sansfaçon, Fournier

Appeal from a judgment of the Court of Quebec concerning the calcualtion of the indemnity for a general holiday. Dismissed.

The trial judge concluded that the indemnity for a general holiday paid to the employees of an employer subject to the Decree respecting the automotive services industry in the Lanaudière-Laurentides regions (CQLR, c. D-2, r. 9) must be calculated by taking into account the wages earned during the reference period, which do not include the bonuses paid during that period. He based his conclusion on his interpretation of s. 6.03 of the Decree and s. 62 of the Act respecting labour standards (CQLR, c. N-1.1) (A.L.S.).

Bonuses (or lump sums) are salary; they are pecuniary benefits granted in exchange for the work of the employees. The Decree does not define the concept of “wages earned during the 4 complete weeks of pay preceding the week of the holiday”.The Act respecting collective agreement decrees (CQLR, c. D-2) also does not define this concept. There is, however, a strong ressemblance between the current wording of s. 6.03 of the Decree and that of s. 62 of the A.L.S. The purpose of that section isto pay employees as if they actually worked on the holiday. In Syndicat des employées et employés professionnels et de bureau, section locale 574, SEPB, CTC-FTQ c. Groupe Pages jaunes Cie (C.A., 2015-05-27), 2015 QCCA 918, SOQUIJ AZ-51179185, 2015EXP-1804, 2015EXPT-1095, J.E. 2015-997, D.T.E. 2015T-414, the Court stated that the “wages earned” mentionned in s. 62 A.L.S. refers to the employee’s base salary and does not include pecuniary benefits. Even though s. 62 A.L.S. does not apply in this case, it is an important interpretive tool, given the similarities with the wording of s. 6.03 of the Decree. Therefore, the bonus cannot be factored into the calculation of the indemnity for the general holiday.

Legislation interpreted:

Section 62 L.S.A.

Section 6.03 of the Decree respecting the automotive services industry in the Lanaudière-Laurentides regions



Text of the decision: Http://citoyens.soquij.qc.ca

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