Federally regulated employees - Filing a labour standards complaint with the Labour Program: Eligibility and timelines

3. Eligibility and timelines

In this section

The Canada Labour Code provides a process to address federal labour standards complaints. There are timeframes that need to be followed and they vary depending on the type of complaint.

Monetary complaint

You must file your monetary complaint within 6 months from the last day your employer was required to pay you. Examples of monetary complaints related to:

  • unpaid wages
    • wages for hours worked including overtime
    • vacation pay
    • general holiday pay
  • other amounts owed:
    • severance pay
    • pay in lieu of notice of termination of employment

Non-monetary complaint

You must file your non-monetary complaint within 6 months from the day you were aware of the issue. Examples of non-monetary complaints:

  • not receiving a response from your employer following a request for a flexible work arrangement
  • not being granted authorized breaks

Unjust dismissal complaint

You must file your unjust dismissal complaint within 90 days from the date of dismissal.

To be eligible, you must:

  • have at least 12 consecutive months of employment with the same employer
  • not be covered by a collective agreement, and
  • not be a manager

Genetic testing complaint

If your complaint is related to the following disciplinary actions, you must file your complaint no later than 90 days after the date on which you knew of the action or circumstances giving rise to the complaint:

  • on the basis of a genetic test results
  • because you refused to take a genetic test, or
  • because you refused to disclose the results of a genetic test

If your complaint is related to your employer collecting or using the genetic test results without your written consent, you must file it within 6 months from the date on which the subject-matter of the complaint arose.

If your complaint is related to third-party disclosure of genetic testing results, you must file it with:

For more information on genetic testing, consult: Rights of federally regulated employees related to genetic testing.

Extension of time to file a complaint

If you have filed a complaint with another department or agency, an extension of time to file a complaint with the Labour Program may be provided to you if:

  • the government official receiving your complaint has no authority to deal with the complaint, and
  • your complaint is made within the timelines

If that's the case, you must complete the “Eligibility for an extension of time to file a complaint” section on your complaint form and enclose copies of all relevant documents.

An example of another department or agency:

  • a provincial government, or
  • territorial government
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