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Canada: Pay and benefits

Original/updating authors: Nafisah Chowdhury, Jenifer Gentle, Andrea Johnson, Ashley Mitchell, Gordon Nekolaichuk, David Tsai and Zeinab Yousif, Miller Thomson

Consultant editor: Margaret Gavins, McCarthy Tétrault


  • Generally, remuneration is set by individual agreements between employers and employees or, in unionised workplaces, by collective agreements. (See General)
  • In general, employers are required to establish a pay period (the interval at which wages are paid) and a pay day for the payment of wages. (See Payment of wages)
  • Employers are generally prohibited from unilaterally making deductions from wages earned and owed to an employee, though with some limited exceptions. (See Deductions)
  • Paying employees differently on the basis of a prohibited ground is a form of discrimination and prohibited by human rights legislation. (See Equal pay)
  • Each province and territory sets its own statutory minimum wage. There is no national minimum wage. Employees covered by federal jurisdiction must be paid the prevailing minimum wage of the province or territory in which the work is performed. (See Minimum wages)
  • Public retirement provision is made up of a universal pension provided by the Old Age Security programme and an earnings-related pension provided by the Canada Pension Plan or, in Quebec, by the Quebec Pension Plan. (See Pensions and benefits)
  • Employers are obliged to deduct income taxes due from employees' pay and pass them on to the tax authorities. (See Income tax and social security)
  • Employees are not generally entitled to receive sick pay from their employer under federal or provincial/territorial legislation. (See Pay for employees not at work)