Leave for victims of family violence

Section VII of part III of the Canada Labour Codeprovides for personal leave.

The following paragraphs are intended to answer any questions that employers and employees under federal jurisdiction may ask on the topic. Sheet No. 1 of this series describes the types of businesses that are therefore subject to the Code. To get this sheet, please contact the Labour Program office or consult the Labour Program website.

On this page

  1. The Code outlines the following rights under the leave for victims of family violence
  2. The meaning of "child and parent"
  3. People eligible for leave
  4. Conditions for paid leave
  5. Calculate the amount to which an employee has the right
  6. The maximum duration of leave stipulated in the Code
  7. Employer’s request for the employee to provide supporting documents concerning the reasons for the leave
  8. If the leave is taken over more than one period

1. The Code outlines the following rights under the leave for victims of family violence

The Code states that when an employee is a victim of family violence or is the parent of a child who is a victim, they have the right to a leave of no more than ten days per calendar year to allow them to do the following, in relation to the family violence experienced:

  • Obtain medical care for themselves or the child with regard to an injury, physical disability, damages or a psychological disability
  • Obtain the services of an organization that provides services to victims of family violence
  • Obtain psychological services or advisory services of another nature
  • Move temporarily or permanently
  • Obtain legal services or the support of organizations tasked with applying legislation, prepare for civil or criminal hearings or participate in such hearings
  • Take any measure prescribed by regulation

2. The meaning of "child and parent"

"Child" means a person who is aged eighteen (18) or under. "Parent" means, with respect to a child, a person who, in law, is a parent (including an adoptive parent), has the custody of or, in Quebec, parental authority over the child, or is the guardian of or, in Quebec, the tutor to the person of the child, or with whom the child is placed for the purposes of adoption under the laws governing adoption in the province in which the person resides.

3. People eligible for leave

All employees, except an employee accused of an infraction related to this act or if the circumstances allow one to believe that it is probable that they committed the act.

4. Conditions for paid leave

The employee has the right to their salary during the leave for victims of family violence if they have worked for the employer without interruption for at least three months. The first five days are paid at the regular rate of pay for a normal work day and such paid leave shall be considered wages. If the employee has not worked at least three months without interruption for the same employer, they have the right to unpaid leave.

5. Calculate the amount to which an employee has the right

Employees whose salary varies from one day to another or who is paid on a basis other than an hourly rate must receive one twentieth of the salary earned over the past 20 days immediately preceding the first day of leave, excluding overtime.

6. The maximum duration of leave stipulated in the Code

The maximum duration of leave stipulated in the Code is 10 days.

7. Employer’s request for the employee to provide supporting documents concerning the reasons for the leave

The employer may, in writing, no later than 15 days after the employee’s return to work, ask them to provide supporting documents concerning the reasons for the leave. The employee is only required to provide such documents if it is possible in practice to obtain and provide them.

8. If the leave is taken over more than one period

The leave may be taken in one or more periods; the employer may, however, require that each period be at least one day.

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