Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 3014 18
E. Smith
  • Employer (definition of) (partner)
  • Employer (related companies)
  • Jurisdiction, Tribunal (final decision of Board)
  • Experience rating (fatal claim premium adjustment)
  • Assessment of employers (fatal claim premium adjustment)
  • Board Directives and Guidelines (employer assessment) (fatal claim premium adjustment)

After a fatal accident at a mine (P) on March 10, 2011, the Board applied a fatal claim premium adjustment to four accounts, which were three mining operations (P, M, and R) and a recreation centre associated with R, on the basis that these were all divisions of employer G. On appeal to the Tribunal, G submitted for the first time that the employer for R and the R recreation centre was a registered partnership rather than G, and therefore the fatal claim premium adjustment was not applicable to these two accounts. In Decision No. 3014/18I, the Vice-Chair requested additional information about the corporate structures of R and the R recreation centre.

The appeal was allowed in part.
The evidence provided confirmed that the partnership was the employer with respect to the business activities at R and the R recreation centre. The fatal claim premium adjustment did not apply to the activities of the partnership, as G was not the employer for those business activities.
The partnership agreement dated to 2007 and had its basis in the acquisition and restructuring of the ownership of several mines in the R area in 2006. All employees working in the properties transferred to the partnership became employees of the partnership, which issued their T4s to Revenue Canada. The Master Business License to operate the mines at R was issued to the partnership.
Board policy recognizes a partnership as a distinct employer when the partnership has employees in its own right. It appeared that the Board was not aware of the partnership, as it had not formally registered as the employer. However, had the partnership registered as the employer, it would likely have been accepted and the accounts of the partnership would not have been subject to the application of the fatal claim premium adjustment policy.
The Vice-Chair did not have jurisdiction to order payment of the refund that had been reversed to the partnership, as no request had been made by the partnership to the Board for that payment. The question of entitlement to a refund was a new issue that had not previously been addressed by the Board, including whether the different corporate structures would affect the payment. The matter of the partnership's entitlement to a refund was remitted to the Board.