In the recent decision of 1392644 Ontario Inc. (Connor Homes) v. Canada (National Revenue) (Connor Homes), the Federal Court of Appeal (FCA) unanimously held that the shared intent or understanding of a worker and the organization that engages his or her services is not determinative of the worker’s legal status as an independent contractor or employee. The parties’ subjective intent is relevant as a starting point for the analysis but must be confirmed by an objective evaluation of the factual nature of the work relationship. As stated at para. 40 of Connor Homes, “the subjective intent of the parties cannot trump the reality of the relationship as ascertained through objective facts.”

The decision in Connor Homes seeks to reconcile the recent trend of emphasizing the importance of the parties’ stated intent regarding a worker’s legal status with case law from the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) requiring consideration of the factual circumstances of the work relationship.

Read the Full Article