The Act respecting labour standards contains provisions concerning overtime that protect the majority of Québec workers, whether they are full or part time.
The normal workweek usually lasts 40 hours. Its length serves to determine the point in time from which an employee begins to work overtime.
However, for some employees the normal workweek is not 40 hours:
Employees of the clothing industry
Watchmen who guard a property on behalf of a firm providing surveillance services
Employees working in a forestry operation or a sawmill
Employees who work in a remote area or on the James Bay territory
Watchmen who do not work for a firm providing surveillance services
The normal workweek is not a period of time beyond which an employee may refuse to work.
The hours worked in addition to the hours of the normal workweek must be paid with a 50% premium in addition to the regular hourly rate (time and a half), without counting the premiums available on an hourly basis such as night shift premiums.
Francis works nights in a supermarket. He is paid $10.00 an hour. To this amount is added a night shift premium of $0.50 an hour. Last week, Francis worked 45 hours. How must his wages be calculated?
The 5 hours exceeding the schedule of a normal workweek must be paid at time and a half. There is no increase in the night premium. Francis will thus receive $15.50 for each hour of overtime.
At the employee’s request, the employer may replace the payment of overtime with a leave of an equivalent duration of the overtime hours worked, increased by 50% (7 hrs = 10 hrs 30 min.).
The annual vacation and statutory holidays are considered days worked for the purposes of calculating overtime.
For some employees, it is the initial agreement that establishes the point in time when they begin to work overtime:
An employee hired for fixed wages to work a predetermined number of hours and who is able to define an hourly rate by dividing the wages by the number of hours worked stipulated in his agreement would seem to be an employee paid at an hourly rate. Hours worked beyond 40 hours should be increased by 50%.
If the agreement stipulates a fixed amount for working an unlimited number of hours of work, with no minimum or maximum, the employer cannot deduct the missing hours if the employee did not work at least 40 hours.
The Commission des normes du travail puts at your disposal calculation tools which help establish the amounts to which an employee is entitled.
The calculation of the indemnity is different according to the employee’s remuneration method.
If the Commission des normes du travail gives its authorization, an employer may stagger the working hours over several weeks. The authorization must be posted in the workplace of the employees affected. This authorization from the Commission is not necessary when the staggering of working hours is stipulated in a collective agreement or a decree.
An employee may refuse to work if, on a given day:
An employee may also refuse to work if, in a given week:
An employee cannot refuse to work:
An employer cannot give an employee who is subject to the Act respecting labour standards conditions of employment that are less advantageous than those of other employees doing the same work in the same establishment due to his hiring date.
These conditions of employment notably deal with:
To learn more, consult section Differences in conditions of employment.
The standard concerning time and a half does not apply to: